US official calls Cook's idea to vote on iPhone 'preposterous'

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Comments

  • Reply 21 of 67

    entropys said:
    No, the vote is more important than how much you earned or what deductions you got.

    I do think the Us needs to clean its act up with voting systems, as it is quite vulnerable to accusations of impropriety. Because it is vulnerable.  Identifying that the voter is entitled to the franchise is important, and people should provide that when they vote.  

    And as for arguments about people not having ID for one reason or another, you can have a process where people wanting to vote can get special voter ID. Like almost every other western country has already.
    We already do that. Reminder: per the previous administration’s own cyber security czar, 2020 was the most secure election in US history. DOJ confirmed the same. There was no meaningful voter fraud. 

    As for voter ID, you clearly don’t understand the issues. I live in the poor south and there are many, many American citizens without drivers licenses. Nor state IDs. Getting them requires vehicles and flexible work schedules. Not everyone can afford to spend 4+ hours at the DMV on a weekday, yet it’s still their god given right to vote. And we have systems that enable this - voter rolls, paper bills, witnesses, signed statements, etc. 
    they rejected even paying any time to look at evidence and threw out cases on technicalities they made up, and you say they confirmed things?

    The only thing they confirmed is they had no desire to hear cases.

    You’ve confirmed you didn’t pay attention to the facts of what actually happened, for whatever reason.

    Your assertions are comically bad.


    mrstep
  • Reply 22 of 67
    Frank LaRose is an idiot- and the whole state of Ohio can't even manage it's Boards of Elections properly.
    More hanky panky with voter databases than you can shake a stick at.
    The problem isn't voter fraud- it's keeping voters in the dark and feeding them shit.
    We need a real, verifiable voter information system first.
    That's why I've started the Modern Policy Institute to try to fix some of this stupidity.
  • Reply 23 of 67
    larryjwlarryjw Posts: 964member
    Of course you'll notice this official is concerned with iPhone users being "lefties". Maybe he'd like it more if people could vote using Trump's Twitter feed.

    Anyway, the technology might already be available to vote by iPhone, but it is yet to be assembled into a product and process that would work. 

    I'd also make voting mandatory. No more only 10% of people voting.
    edited April 2021 Vermelhoronn
  • Reply 24 of 67
    I think it's "preposterous" to think it's not a good idea.

    If you put aside all of the philosophical arguments against it and look at it as an exercise in user centred design then it makes perfect sense. You want a system that is accessible to as many people as possible, that makes it quick and easy to vote. In that case an official government voting app would make sense. It could use end to end encryption with built in verification systems as used by many other mission critical information systems. For those that don't have phones, tablets or computers, polling stations could just have iPads in booths running the voting app.

    The recent US election showed not only is electronic systems reliable but there seems to be more room for manipulation through systems that heavily involve humans.

    The other major positive is this would drastically reduce the time to get a result and reduce the cost of voting systems.

    Obviously this will never happen in the US unless things dramatically change. Say what you will about the state of politics in the UK but their voting system is sorted. Everyone is treated the same, they even get the option to vote via post. None of the parties can manipulate or delay the system, they just have to sit and watch as the process runs its course.
  • Reply 25 of 67
    bonobobbonobob Posts: 345member
     I don't think the federal government has the constitutional authority to set up the certificate policy required for voting in the individual states. 

    Section 4

    The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Places of chusing Senators.

    ronnrandominternetperson
  • Reply 26 of 67
    rob53rob53 Posts: 3,086member
    Wow, like there isn’t enough hackings. Also i would never trust a big tech with my PI. Just saying.
    I don't even fully know how to respond to this.

    Whatever ISP you use already has it, which means that Google or Facebook either already have it, or can get it easily. If you read AppleInsider, odds are, Apple has it already. Or, if you're a veteran, it's been leaked six times by the feds in the last 20 years. Nearly every state DMV has had a data breach of some sort.
    Mike, I'll respond for you.

    @Stopthebully (not sure which bully they're talking about), small tech, medium tech, large tech, and government tech has been storing your PII (personally identifiable information is the proper term) for decades. There's no other way to store it so it can be used by multiple organizations that you want it shared with.

    As for Apple being used for voting, you need to do some reading to understand how current Apple technology would allow an iPhone (maybe also a non-Apple phone) to act as a secure entry device. It's already being used in this way with Apple Pay. An encrypted token from your approved/registered iPhone (when you register to vote) is sent to the Apple Pay server for validation. Once validated, the purchase is processed. As a voting entry device, an app would have the approved list of candidates and measures, the voter would click on who/what they want, press a pre-approval button so you could check everything, then a VOTE button to send in your vote. Just like buying something from a restaurant or store. Could this be hacked? Has Apple Pay been hacked (yet)? Apple hasn't done a voting system YET because it requires lots of government approval and TOO MANY REPUBLICANS would challenge anything that makes it easier to vote. 
    muthuk_vanalingamDogperson
  • Reply 27 of 67
    Wow, like there isn’t enough hackings. Also i would never trust a big tech with my PI. Just saying.
    I don't even fully know how to respond to this.

    Whatever ISP you use already has it, which means that Google or Facebook either already have it, or can get it easily. If you read AppleInsider, odds are, Apple has it already. Or, if you're a veteran, it's been leaked six times by the feds in the last 20 years. Nearly every state DMV has had a data breach of some sort.
    The problem with votes being tracked to individuals is that puts a target on their backs for their political choices, and greatly affects how people will vote if there’s even the thought it can be personally tracked to them.

    Considering what has been going on, it takes willful ignorance to not see that being a major problem. If you think it’s not a problem, try “The other foot” approach: what do you think would happen if your most feared enemies had certain knowledge you voted against their wishes outcomes?

    A HUGE problem with involving computers in this is a matter of trust far beyond being able to track down if their vote has been correctly counted, but also, who else can see it, not to mention: if you can’t see what others voted and which others voted and can’t confirm with the actual people in question that they voted, who is to say it wasn’t changed, or completely fabricated?

    Speaking as one in the field for my career for decades, the more concentrated the control over systems involved, the more code there is (or any black box) the less viable it is to trust anything by the general public, because it literally isn’t apparent by inspection that it’s all valid and verifiable, and that someone in control of implementation or ownership of the devices used for voting hasn’t tampered with them.

    It only requires one person changing code deployed to key machines to change an election. At least by old paper methods alone, it requires a lot more humans to physically change things, and it’s harder to get that many involved and organized, coordinated to do that.

    Making voting too easy to do also makes it too vulnerable to manipulation and too hard to trust.  Not all things should be automated at all, electronic computers or otherwise.
  • Reply 28 of 67
    larryjw said:
    I'd also make voting mandatory. No more only 10% of people voting.
    Yes!  Like Australia.  Along with more direct policy bills decided by popular majority.
    Detnator
  • Reply 29 of 67
    iOS_Guy80iOS_Guy80 Posts: 677member
    I have been wanting to vote on my iPhone for years.
  • Reply 30 of 67
    There are definitive ways to make it such that a person can vote by a device. A few people have talked about some of the technologies that can be used to validate that the person making the request is in fact the person that can vote. Like one person said, this is already done via Apple Pay (which is the far more secure way of doing contactless payments than anything out there). It is established that the card (or person) is valid, and then they are given a a secure credential. One way of doing this is by public key/private key encryption. That way the public key (i.e. the voting servers) can read what the votes are, but they will not know who the person is. Also, the person who submitted the vote can verify that their vote is the one they actually did.

    Now, this is a very rudimentary example of what can be done, and there should be additional safeguards that are put into place plus there are other considerations that need to be dealt with (person changes device, what then?) that need to be addressed. But, all of those things are things that can be done with the will and desire to make it happen. It requires EXPERTS not POLITICIANS to come up with the solutions, and that way it is 100% fair for everybody.
    Dogperson
  • Reply 31 of 67
    genovellegenovelle Posts: 1,433member
    A small part of my job was writing and updating a "digital certificate policy" for my government, which includes a section on identity-proofing, and the document was approximately 100 pages in length. Voting with a personal device (which I believe would have to use digital certificates, and therefore require certificate policies) is theoretically possible but opens up multiple cans of legal, procedural, and financial worms. And neither the article nor the comments have addressed the biggest problems. I don't think most people are even aware of what the issues even are.

    I won't make a list of the problems, which would take tens of pages, but I'll tell you this. If it was easy, why doesn't Apple already do it? E.g., when I buy an iPhone, Apple has NO IDEA who I am (even if I buy it in an Apple store, [rather than Walmart] they didn't even require a credit card until recently, and even then, some credit cards are corporate and not personal.) I don't have to show them any ID to prove my identity. I could be an illegal alien. I could be a foreign diplomat. I could be a shared corporate phone. So exactly how does Apple propose that the government know who the person at the other end is, if Apple doesn't even know themselves? Is Apple going to rely on the identities provided by the telephone company which provides the wireless services? Wouldn't that be an important part of the process since Apple iPhones can be privately sold without informing Apple? And this is just 5% of the problem.

    Most countries probably have their federal certificate policies online. Just google your country's own certificate policy and read it. I suspect that in the US only the federal government (no state government) has a certificate policy, and since voting is largely a state responsibility, each state would have to write one before any of this could work. I don't think the federal government has the constitutional authority to set up the certificate policy required for voting in the individual states. But the feds may have authority over voting in D.C., (also Puerto Rico, Guam, etc.) so that would be a good place to experiment, since it's such a geographically small zone, which is important when part of the policy involves visually verifying IDs to approve the device's certificate. If you can't get it going in a small jurisdiction first, then you certainly can't get it going nationwide.

    The US probably won't be the first country to achieve voting on personal devices. It might be one of the last to get there due to constitutional issues. It's more likely that some dictatorship which already holds everyone's personal information can achieve this first. I can certainly see a country like China, which recently introduced digital currency, attempting this in the near future, since they are heavily invested into tracking their people already. Of course they don't have elections in dictatorships, but I can see China wanting to prove their technological superiority (and at the same time improve on their ability to track citizens.) My bet would be on Singapore getting there first. They have an interest in these sorts of technologies, and they have a good mix of high tech, small geography, and a very dominant single political party to make this happen fast, if they want to.
    I believe Apple’s solution could work. The fact that they don’t know who you are is not an issue because your iphone does. The same way the irs confirms your identity can be used to authenticate your identity in an official voting app. If voting completely online is a concern, the option would be to have secured certified voting centers with lots of nfc terminals available when voters can vote 24 hours a day during the vote period. Once they put their iphone near the terminal the app will launch automatically, and pull up a voting screen that will be tied to the district they live in. They could even have the ability to preselect their choices and submit them once on site. 

    The app could record that the encrypted ballot has been sent and report that information to the system, but not who they voted for. The NFC Terminal would log the votes without the identification info and report voting records at   random delayed intervals to maintain privacy and election integrity, by ensuring a vote could not be connected to someone by comparing times. Every rolling 5 minutes the primary system would compare the total number of votes submitted via the app to the total number of ballots returned by the NFC terminals to make sure the balance. 

    In fact they already do this. It’s called Apple Pay. 
    edited April 2021
  • Reply 32 of 67
    There are definitive ways to make it such that a person can vote by a device. A few people have talked about some of the technologies that can be used to validate that the person making the request is in fact the person that can vote. Like one person said, this is already done via Apple Pay (which is the far more secure way of doing contactless payments than anything out there). It is established that the card (or person) is valid, and then they are given a a secure credential. One way of doing this is by public key/private key encryption. That way the public key (i.e. the voting servers) can read what the votes are, but they will not know who the person is. Also, the person who submitted the vote can verify that their vote is the one they actually did.

    Now, this is a very rudimentary example of what can be done, and there should be additional safeguards that are put into place plus there are other considerations that need to be dealt with (person changes device, what then?) that need to be addressed. But, all of those things are things that can be done with the will and desire to make it happen. It requires EXPERTS not POLITICIANS to come up with the solutions, and that way it is 100% fair for everybody.
    What a common person cannot understand (black boxes) is what a common person cannot audit to be sure it’s all working as it needs to work and is not corruptible and as such, no common person (with common sense) will trust.

    If it requires experts to design and implement it, only experts could possibly audit it, but an expert in this context can only audit that such a thing is valid for any given moment they audit it, if they compare source code translated to machine code as to what’s running at the moment they vote.

    Things get much harder then to the point of impossibility that it cannot and is not corrupted. Nobody has much motive to corrupt income tax filings, what’s to gain? Voting results? Clear motivations easily identified. Where something that can be corrupted and is hard to audit/validate, when the gain is large enough, someone will do it or has already done so.

    I know the limits of computer technology in this area. I also know people and their limits. Only someone that doesn’t understand both think this is resolvable by throwing computer tech at it.  There’s no way something so secure (in theory) will be trusted by common people, they have too much data to suggest otherwise.

    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 33 of 67
    Maybe we just need to have a staff of elderly people check and verify who is voting by phone.  After all, we trust their skills at the polling places.  lol

    Seriously though, the technology is there to positively identify the account of a user using the device, whether by using certificates, tokens, plus device biometrics.  There are ways to fake/forge any of those...but that exists in most realms.  So, making it as positive as possible is the only way.  Multifactor identification to the extreme.

    But as some others have said, it is essential to positively identify the identity of the voter, but to separate that voter’s identity with the actual votes cast.  The paper and/or electronic voting systems do this, by putting no voter identifiable information together with the cast votes.  So, would it be that difficult, after positively identifying the voter, to allow that person to cast a single ballot with no link to the voter’s identity?  I suspect the solution is closer than we know.

    The problem is, the clowns who are in power in the various governmental agencies, are not tech-aware, so they make the assumption that electronic voting from an iPhone is not safe or secure.  After all, Frank LaRose didn’t say that Tim Cook told him what a secure solution is.  He just jumped to the immediate conclusion that it isn’t safe and secure.  Maybe because his pornhub account got hacked?  lol
    larryjw
  • Reply 34 of 67
    Sorry but the “good book” so to speak doesn’t say they need any of this crap:

     The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of ...” enter amendment specific  text.

    It just says Citizens.  So yes I should be able to vote online through a phone with verifiable information that I am a citizen.  So my SSN and my driver’s license number should be enough.  

    Almost all the BS this crony is spewing would be resolved in a few hours with the right app team.  It is just more government overreach and desire to squash the masses.  (Full disclosure, I am a guberment employee🤪)

    In my state we have voted exclusively by mail for years and years and years.  The only verification is my signature on the envelope.  It works here and it should work in all states.  

    Voting is a constitutional right and the concept is entrained in our Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights.  Our founding fathers created a system to prevent the republic from going through another government change by empowering us the right to vote for those who oversee us.  That right, like other rights spelled out in the constitution, shall not be infringed.

    So, New MacBooks say what?
    rbnetengr
  • Reply 35 of 67
    larryjw said:
    I'd also make voting mandatory. No more only 10% of people voting.
    Absolutely not.  I, like many others, find the act of choosing a master for myself or someone else to be morally and ethically reprehensible.  You can keep your “voting”; I want no part of it.
    randominternetperson
  • Reply 36 of 67
    dewmedewme Posts: 4,632member
    What a bunch of political grandstanding BS. 

     There’s a big difference between Tim Cook saying that iPhones “could be” part of a voting simplification solution and suggesting that iPhones “should be” used for voting or that Apple has a solution in place that governments should use. In civil times people would float ideas, discuss pros and cons, rethink the idea with additional input and feedback, and then decide whether the idea was worth further consideration/discussion or sent to the virtual bit bucket of ideas that didn’t quite pan out. No harm, no foul. 

     That was then, and now is now. What happens now is total warfare from the start. It’s never about discussion or compromise, it’s one side must win and the other side must be annihilated. The parade of posers are locked, loaded, and waiting with hair trigger anticipation to unleash their prepared and scripted diatribes at the slightest provocation. Just a hint of a trigger word, phrase, or insinuation of territorial encroachment is all it takes for the bloviation cannons to be unleashed. 

     I really wish STFU was effective against politicians, but they’ve developed total herd immunity.
    edited April 2021 roundaboutnowbikerduderandominternetpersonrbnetengrDogperson
  • Reply 37 of 67
    jccjcc Posts: 311member
    The best solution is a hybrid system. Use your devices to fill out your choices. Then show up on Election Day at your normal voting place and tap your phone to enter your vote. That would speed up the process by 10 fold. For those red states with the paranoid people, you can even tap to print out a paper ballot so that the vote can be confirmed by all parties.
  • Reply 38 of 67
    lkrupp said:
    Well, the progressives are already okay with the idea of not having to prove your identity at the polling place. I mean they want to boycott Georgia for requiring it. And then there’s the absentee ballot, the mailed/emailed ballot, all of which can be falsified pretty easily. So I should be able to show up at a polling place, tell them who I am without proof of identity, and vote, right? So whats the problem with iPhone voting?
    This is the best example of how either, deliberate trolling, or complete misunderstanding of the point of the article creates nonsense. The author understands neither progressives nor the voting system...and is here propagating lies fed to them by FOX news and Donald Trump's lackeys.

    The amount of voter fraud is less than one half of one percent of all votes cast.

    The absentee ballot and mail-in ballot have been around for many years and 5 states have been voting entirely by mail since long before the pandemic, including Colorado and Utah--conservative states. If these are so easy to falsify why has there been so little of it? Has the author ever tried to falsify their identity? No, because thy're a law abiding citizen...and it's really hard to do.

    The iPhone is one of the most secure ID vaults you can own. You have to prove your identity several times over just to own and use one. then getting in and out of that phone requires biometrics--finger scanners or Face-ID...both of which have been proven to be quite secure.

    While it does not exist yet, vote by phone is coming. After all, the entire conservative banking system lets people bank by phone all over the globe, over phones that are far less secure than an iPhone.

    This Ohio representative's protest is an early 'shot across the bow' by the Republicans to see if they can get more traction on the talking points raising concern over voter fraud--which, statistically speaking--does not exist.
    dewmeDogperson
  • Reply 39 of 67
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 1,976member
    jcc said:
    The best solution is a hybrid system. Use your devices to fill out your choices. Then show up on Election Day at your normal voting place and tap your phone to enter your vote. That would speed up the process by 10 fold. For those red states with the paranoid people, you can even tap to print out a paper ballot so that the vote can be confirmed by all parties.

    Politicians don't want the best solution for us they want the best solution for them.
    Sure a human/machine readable ballot with say a QR code for each voting combination would be trivial to set up allow you to drop in an anonymous piece of paper or scan it off your phone to get to a sausage sizzle and make the line move fast.  Yet it would mean people make up their mind before turning up and have all the time in the world to use the system to their advantage and counting would be fast and robust and checkable and no politicians want informed voters.
  • Reply 40 of 67
    Didn't several Republican members of Congress vote virtually on the COVID relief bill why they were at CPAC? Seems like another case of "do as I say, not as I do" which unfortunately has become the norm from them.
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