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Oscar Voting Going Electronic in 2013

Oscar Voting Going Electronic in 2013
Oscar Awards in Cookie Form

Oscar Voting in 2013. A Half-Baked Idea?

According to the British publication the Guardian. co.UK voting for the 2013 Oscars will be done online over the Internet. This has more than a couple computer security experts deeply concerned.

The basis of the concern is certainly simple enough. There is an oxymoron in putting a anonymous voting and verification in the same sentence. The contract was awarded to a California Company known as Everyone Counts. The firm waives these concerns off with statements including ” multiple layers of security” and ” then military – grade encryption techniques”.

However a professor of computer science at Stanford university, David Dill stated: ” everybody would like there to be secure Internet voting, but some very smart people have looked at the problem and can’t figure out how to do it. … The problem arises as soon as you decouple the voter from the recorded vote. If someone cast about for best actor A and the vote is recorded for best actor B, the voter has no way of knowing the ballot has been altered, and the auditor will be able to see it either.”

The professor is particularly concerned that the Academy’s 5000 plus votes is accomplished from their home computers.

” and the hardest problem is when you have a malicious software on the machine where the vote is cast. If that’s the user’s home PC, that’s a huge problem, because lots of people have on detected virus is on their machine. A lot of people are under the control of hackers in Eastern Europe, or wherever, and don’t even know it.”

Across the pond European experts on both computers an elections have expressed their concern as well in the Dagstuhi Accord. This welcomes further research while concluding currently there are no adequate safeguards against known threats. The British professor of Applied Security at the University of Luxembourg is not thrilled by his look at the software from Everyone Counts. He stated: ” it looks like what they want they are offering is little more than some fancy crypto one certain links. This of course that she is very little…”

Ric Robertson, the Academy’s Chief Operating Officer appeared to be unaware of the concern.

“I’m not personally aware of that particular dialogue.”
The CEO of Everyone Counts, Lori Steele makes the counterargument that no system is perfect and a Computer System is inherently more reliable. “Paper is more easily forged impact than any Computer System”, she said.

Others are concerned with the statement that while Everyone Counts has on its web site is willingness to share the source code with independent auditors, it comes with so many strings attached, it makes the offer hollow. David Dill of Verified Voting stated: ” not letting me talk about it is not going to prove much to anybody else. The goal of complete openness ought to be able to prove the security of their system, and to do what they need to do more than they have done… Without giving away any trade secrets, I think I can say that I was not persuaded it was as secure at the level we need.”

His concern beyond the Academy Awards is the implicit approval to millions. ” I don’t want this to set a precedent and it makes you are pushed to the Internet voting generally. I don’t want the message to be: they used it for the Academy Awards, so it’s OK to use it to vote for the president.”

5 Responses to Oscar Voting Going Electronic in 2013

  1. The Academy certainly went with much higher brow nominees this year which I think will lose them a large portion of their young audience. After doing better at being in touch with the public the past two years, these stiff nominees just fall flat. I usually have something in common with the choice but not this year- if the contenders seem stuffy to you, check out my own Top 10 Movie Picks of 2011 at where you won’t see a single of the Academy’s nominees for Best Picture but you will get some movie artwork I drew up as well as the reviews!

  2. [...] The rest is here: Oscar Voting Going Electronic in 2013 | TRCB News [...]

  3. [...] Continued here: Oscar Voting Going Electronic in 2013 | TRCB News [...]

  4. [...] Oscar Voting Going Electronic in 2013 – The Oscars in 2013 could switch from a very traditional mail-in ballot system to a very contemporary online voting system seemingly overnight.  The new system, championed by a California company known as Everyone Counts, should be up and running just in time for next years awards season.  Naturally, opponents and skeptics alike are concerned about both the program’s security, integrity, and what kind of precedent this could set for other events and industries. [TRCB] [...]