Ontario moving to electronic voting

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The Province of Ontario's 8.5 million voters may have the option of casting their ballot online in the coming decade, making it the largest jurisdiction in the world to introduce voting by internet.

In June, the province's chief electoral officer announced plans to test online and telephone voting in a by-election, possibly as early as 2017. His report recognizes the need for “independent, open” testing of potential approaches to security concerns, and the challenge of introducing a two-step identity authentication process.

To date, only the municipalities of Markham and Peterborough have used online voting in actual elections within the province. Elsewhere, online voting has been used for general voting in jurisdictions that include the municipalities of Halifax, Honolulu and Geneva, the state of Vermont, the Australian state of New South Wales, Estonia, and in various parts of the United Kingdom.

Plans to test some form of electronic voting at the federal level have been postponed due to budget concerns.

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