A two-day seminar on e-democracy has marked the starting point in Europe’s attempts to draw citizens closer to their governments using online technologies.
Security: The biggest issue facing e-democracy are
the security challenges posed by immature e-voting systems which
are vulnerable to cyber-attacks or electoral fraud. Recent US
examples have highlighted deep suspicions about the reliability of
Access: E-democracy, in much the same way as
e-commerce or e-learning, is heavily dependant on the public’s
access to a computer and a fast Internet connection. This is why
the Commission has emphasised the importance of those services
being available on devices other than computers, including
interactive TV and third generation mobile phones (3G).
Secrecy: An all-time problem associated with
polling systems is the question of voter’s independence and freedom
of choice in electing their representatives without feeling
pressurised by third parties. Polling secrecy was the traditional
answer to this question. E-voting, however, brings this problem to
a new level since voters would become able to express their choices
from any location using computers or mobile phones, away from the
neutral environment offered by polling stations.