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British Electoral Commission calls a halt on eVoting

15 August, 2007
By Allison Orr

At the British local government elections on 3 May this year, electoral pilot schemes were trialled in 12 electorates.  These pilots allowed electronic voting at polling stations, electronic counting, remote electronic voting, and telephone voting.  These schemes have now been evaluated and the reports have been published.

The results were mixed across electorates, with some having technical difficulties, and others experiencing significant problems in eCounting that resulted in reverting to manual counts.  In these cases, the counting took much longer than a normal manual count would have taken.

However, the Commission points out that there was insufficient time to implement and plan the pilot schemes and quality assurance testing was done too late.  Some best practice solutions that had been learned in previous schemes were not implemented and concerns were raised regarding transparency of the eCounting process.

The Commission recommends a halt to eVoting until the following elements are in place:

Further Details:
British Electoral Commission: Key Findings and Recommendations
British Electoral Commission: May 2007 pilot schemes

See also our previous story on this issue: New report expresses concerns over eVoting in Britain

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