Internet voting in Estonia

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					Internet voting in Estonia

               Heiki Sibul
  Chairman of the National Electoral Committee

              4th Quality Conference
              Tampere 27.-29.09.2006
First Internet voting
l   In October 2005 Estonia had the
    Internet Voting
    with binding results

l   ~ 80% of voters had a chance to vote via
l   ~2% of voters used that possibility

 Estonian National Electoral Committee
 §   Ministry of Internal Affairs
 §   City of Tallinn
 §   Certification Centre
 §   Chancellery of the Riigikogu
 §   Cybernetica Ltd
 §   KPMG Baltics Ltd
Reasons behind the case
l   The use of digital channels is steadily widening

l   Political agreement to introduce Internet voting
      l   - In 2002 the legislative basis for Internet voting was created

l   Widespread use of ID cards enables secure

l    To increase turnout
l   Population: 1.35 Mio

l   Everyday Internet usage (15-74 years old): 54%

l   Households with a computer: 40%
      l   81% home computers connected to the Internet

l   Mobile penetration: 95%

l   e-ID card roll-out: 65%
    ID card project
l   Started: 1997

l   Act on personal identification documents: 1999

l   Digital Signature Act: 2000

l   First card issued: 2002

l   900 000 cards issued: Feb 2006
    Voters’authentication with
                                l   Compulsory document
                                         for all residents

l   Contains:
    l   Personal data file
    l   Certificate for authentication
    l   Certificate for digital signature
Secrecy scheme
System architecture
Tools for voting
Voter needs:
l   an Estonian ID card with valid
    certificates and PIN codes

Computer used for voting must have:
l a smart card reader
l a driver for ID card (free to download from
I Voting website

II Identification
§   Put your card into card reader

§   Insert PIN 1

    III Ballot completion
§   Choose
    a candidate
    IV Authentication
§   Confirm
    your choice
§   Insert PIN 2

V Confirmation
Process leading to success
l   Political agreement to introduce Internet voting and
    create the legislative basis for it;

l   Electronic identification system is functioning;

l   ID cards are widespread;

l   Reasonable costs;

l   Cooperation between public and private sector.
Lessons learned

l   Internet voting attracts people to other electronic public
    services. For instance in 2005 elections 60% of e-voters gave
    their first digital signature.

l   Long-term planning on national level to introduce widespread
    means for electronic authentication creates basis for further

l   Existence of a countrywide electronic authentication system is
    vital. It reduces significantly electoral costs and raises public

l   Internet voting is a part of the concept of e-government. It
    widens accessibility and encourages participation.
Thank you for your attention!

               Heiki Sibul
Chairman of the National Electoral Committee

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