Wish you could vote online? It could happen by 2020

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - If you're voting Tuesday, chances are you'll have to wait in line for quite some time to exercise your civic duty. But come 2020, you might be able to cast your ballot with the click of a button.

Electronic voting is already available in Missouri and Kansas -- but only if you are a member of the military who is overseas.
 
Technology is making it possible to move voting from the ballot box to online. But Brian Hare, assistant professor in the computer science and electrical engineering department at University of Missouri-Kansas City, tells his students it's not about when it happens -- it's about how to keep votes secret and secure.
 
"They've been studying network security and, in part, learning all the different ways that security can fail," Hare said. "And then we start talking about moving our elections onto that sort of system."
 
One of the many hurdles is hackers.

"If you're going to pull an election scam involving 500 fake paper ballots, that takes some doing," Hare explained. "If it's all just numbers on a server, faking 500 votes might be very easy and might be very difficult to detect."
 
And without the protection of a polling place, voters could be forced to cast their ballot a certain way.
 
"Is there somebody standing over your shoulder, telling you how to vote," Hare questioned.
 
Other issues could come into play when an e-voting system is eventually rolled out.
 
"If one state implements electronic voting and something goes wrong, then you basically got the Florida 2000 recounts all over again," he said. "If we try going to one national system and something goes wrong, you have the Florida recounts in 10 states at once." 
 
Hare's prediction is that we still won't be ready by 2016, but he thinks 2020 might be the first shot at e-voting for most Americans.
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