Re: Left off the ballot?

From: David Mertz <voting-project_at_gnosis_dot_cx>
Date: Wed Apr 14 2004 - 23:16:54 CDT

On Apr 14, 2004, at 9:53 PM, Steve Chessin wrote:
> I don't understand why you cannot replay the order in which each voter
> made their selections, as long as you can't replay the order of the
> voters themselves.

I agree that, for the most part, storing the click-sequence during a
particular voting session does not compromise anonymity if these
click-sequence records are not themselves stored in a sequence (or
reconstructible to sequence).

The minor exception to that is that there might be a correlation
between voters' total time in the booth and the number of clicks. For
middling values of either, not much is disclosed; but possibly for very
quick or very lengthy sessions, you can guess likely voters. Someone
who goes in, knows the interface, and votes in exactly one race will be
out of the booth pretty quick. Maybe a watcher correlates that with
the "one-click" session-click-sequence record on that VES (assuming
there are few one-click records). Or correspondingly, a voter who has
trouble with the interface takes a long time and has lots of

However, I also do not really see any positive value in retaining
session-click-sequence records. I know you can spin a strange
hypothetical bug or hack that is click-sequence sensitive. Well, OK,
not *that* strange. But I would worry more about length-of-operation
issues (after 6 hours a memory leak gets bad), or simple random
glitches (if the write-head of the CD-R is positioned just-so when a
vote is recorded, something bad happens).

Yours, David...

mertz@ | The specter of free information is haunting the `Net! All the
gnosis | powers of IP- and crypto-tyranny have entered into an unholy
.cx | alliance...ideas have nothing to lose but their chains. Unite
       | against "intellectual property" and anti-privacy regimes!
= The content of this message, with the exception of any external
= quotations under fair use, are released to the Public Domain
Received on Fri Apr 30 23:17:06 2004

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Fri Apr 30 2004 - 23:17:29 CDT