As per reports on 2nd Jan 2019, Thailand’s NECTEC (National Electronics and Computer Technology Center) has developed blockchain technology for e-voting.
National Electronics and Computer Technology Center is a legal government organization which functions under the purview of the Ministry of Science and Technology and the National Science and Technology Development Agency. The primary objective of the organization is to primarily promote the development of IT, computing, electronics, and telecommunications.
People of Thailand are becoming more literate and because of this blockchain technology can be apparently deployed alongside traditional voting process. NECTEC stated that after the adoption of 5G, all the votes would be linked with the new technology.
In the words of the head of the cybersecurity laboratory at NECTEC, Chalee Vorakulpipat, the development of the blockchain technology for e-voting can be applied to the provincial, community or national elections, as well as business votes such as the board of directors. The ambition is the reduction of fraud and maintenance of data integrity.
He said that a controller, voters, and candidates are required for the system to function correctly. Before elections, the controller can verify voter identity and candidate qualifications. Voters will vote by email and must be authenticated by mobile camera.
Blockchain-based e-voting process has the potential to make elections cheaper, faster and secure but it will take time to make sure that each voter has a mobile internet connection and valid identity verification.
According to Chalee Vorakulpipat, blockchain e-voting could be organized in the short term in a closed environment, e.g., Thai nationals living abroad can visit consulate or embassy for voting and verification of their identities. He also said that this voting system could be tried and implemented in small elections at organizations like universities or companies, provinces and committee boards.
Various other nations are also considering using blockchain technology to conduct election processes securely. After the 2018 federal mid-term elections in the US, the Secretary of State of West Virginia informed a successful test of mobile blockchain e-voting for people of West Virginia stationed overseas in the armed services.
The Japanese city of Tsukuba and the Swiss city of Zug have accomplished trials of blockchain voting in municipal elections. In Tsukuba, the voting process was contributed to several social programs. Residents can choose and support from proposed initiatives like constructing objects for outdoor sports, developing a new cancer diagnostic technology, and creating sound navigation in the city.