Microsoft hopes its technology will help Americans trust voting again

building-1011876_1920Question: Do you trust the voting process? Is it time to update the voting process with new technology?

When voters in Fulton, Wisconsin, arrived to cast their ballots in a local election Tuesday, the voting process looked a little different.

Rather than the usual paper ballots, voters made their selections on digital tablets, loaded them onto plastic cards outfitted with memory chips, and inserted them into a card reader that saved the votes to a computer and printed a paper copy of each ballot to be placed in a ballot box.

Another unfamiliar feature of the day: A handful of Microsoft  executives stood by to explain and answer questions about the technology underlying the new system, called ElectionGuard.

The election in Fulton was the first official test of ElectionGuard, a voting software developed by Microsoft as part of its “Defending Democracy” project. ElectionGuard uses a relatively new form of encryption to secure votes and tally them in minutes. It’s designed to make it harder for hackers to break into the system, but also to make it immediately obvious if the system is tampered with.


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