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September 23, 2020
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Blockchain-based voting in Russia fails Blocksats

According to Russian media reports, the new voting system based on blockchain is not as perfect as the supporters of this new technology would like.

Voting with problems

Electronic voting, which lasts from 25 to 30 June, is dedicated to the inhabitants of Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod. It is also based on the blockchain Exonum platform developed by Bitfury. The solution was supposed to help encrypt voters’ votes to ensure their full anonymity, security and unchanging data.

The inhabitants of Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod can vote offline (i.e. using voting cards thrown into the polls) or online via a special website, which according to reports however, the RIA news agency was unavailable for the first few hours after the election process began.

According to the official Central Election Commission, the failure occurred due to “Peak demand” on the part of voters. Meanwhile, Otkritiye Media reported that only 494 residents of Moscow voted within the first hour. Therefore, no excessive load should occur.

Jellyfish, a local news website, informs that electronic voting has shown “Strange results in some regions”. For example, almost 7,300 people assigned in the system to polling stations in the Trojick County have registered to vote online, despite the fact that the district has only 2,358 residents entitled to vote. The local electoral commission said it was “technical defect. “

A local journalist, Pavel Lobkov, described how he managed to vote twice using the system yesterday: he initially voted offline at his polling place, and then an hour later online. The head of the CEC, Ella Pamfilova, called Łobków’s activities “provocation”.

Cointelegraph contacted Bitfury to discuss issues reported, but the company declined to comment.

Voting important for Putin

Voting is important for Vladimir Putin himself. It is about constitutional amendments that will allow him to remain in the Kremlin for six more years, which means in practice that he may be president until 2026.

It is unclear whether technological problems are the result of the “holes” of the blockchain itself, or only other technologies that were used in the system design.

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