During the parliamentary elections in Russia, about 30,000 blockchain-based votes were registered, which seems to be the largest case of blockchain-based voting to date. The blockchain component of the electronic voting platform was created by Waves Enterprise. The voting ended early yesterday morning, and according to Waves Enterprise product manager Artyom Kalikhov, everything went smoothly.
He told Cointelegraph that the election was held on Rostelecom’s licensed network. The company signed a contract with the Central Election Commission in Russia, which in turn contracted Waves Enterprise to create a blockchain part of the electronic platform. The audience did not notice ten nodes in Rostelecom. According to Kalikov, this was done to prevent possible cyber attacks. He also believes that Rostelecom will make its blockchain network available to the public in the near future. However, all transactions were published in two comma-separated value files. This means that anyone can check cryptographic hashes for all transactions registered by the platform.
There are five master encryption keys generated in a decentralized manner, which are then combined into a master encryption key. To decrypt the election results, a predetermined number of keys is required. This is similar to multi-signature wallets that require multiple keys to allow transactions, rather than a single key signature. Therefore, it is important that these keys are kept by independent and reliable controllers. Kalikov does not know who was responsible for the keys this time.
The election was held in two regions of Russia, Kursk and Yaroslavl, with a population of 2.5 million. Local residents were given the opportunity to vote in person or online. In the Kursk region, 13,184 people were registered for online voting, of which 11,940 people, or 90.59%, eventually registered their votes on the blockchain. In the Yaroslavl region, 16,828 people out of 18,834 voted online, which is 91.54%. A total of 28771 people voted for blockchain.
Kalikov hopes that the success of this first experiment will lead to blockchain-based voting over Russia in future elections. If this happens, it could lead to millions of votes being registered on the blockchain. To vote in the two regions, the team tested the system internally with up to one million votes, so it looks like there were many additional options. Meanwhile, the team behind Wave’s public blockchain has been working on a similar voting system that has worked in an unauthorized environment. Potential utility issues include more than just government elections, Kalikov said. It is believed that this technology can be used in the private sector; For example, for voting by shareholders.
While blockchain technology has many valuable features that can be successfully used for voting, such as stability, transparency and anonymity, no technology can serve as a silver bullet against a fake system.