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Should The U.S. Allow Online Voting?

1382 words - 6 pages

In the age of technology, we do almost everything through the Internet. We can take classes online, check bank accounts, shop, and even date in the virtual world. If we can do all of these things then why not vote online as well. The idea of cyber voting has not been accepted as well as one would think in this day and age. The many security risks that come with computers and technology scares many Americans to stray away from exploring this new horizon. Voting online in theory is appealing, but in practice is not realistic. Security issues and a social issue known as the “Digital Divide” provide major drawbacks to online voting, but the convenience and cheap cost can be sufficient enough to convince the United States otherwise.
Security issues are the main setbacks when it comes to the topic of online voting. The Internet not only makes the average person’s life easier, but can also be abused if in the wrong hands. One result of this potential abuse is identity fraud. With an online voting system, there is no way of positively knowing that the person behind the screen voting is really who they say they are. Yes, the incorporation of one’s social security number and driver’s license or id number can make it more difficult for someone to commit identity fraud, but still does not make it impossible. The risk of identity theft is too prominent to ignore. “The average number of U.S. identity fraud victims annually is about 11,571,900.” (Statistic Brain) Computers are far too vulnerable to be secure enough to create a safe environment for voting in presidential and even congressional elections. “Personal computers, from which emails are sent, are easily and constantly attacked by viruses, worms, Trojan Horses and spyware.” (Verified Voting) If it is difficult for us now to protect our personal computers from these threats, imagine what could emerge if online voting were approved. Technology is continually getting better, but that doesn’t mean those who abuse it aren’t benefiting from this expansion of knowledge. Online voting could open up an entirely new world of chaos. The technological resources that are available could be manipulated by terrorist groups or rigged by inside government agencies to sabotage our elections in their favor. The job of national security would take a whole new role that at this present day it is not adequately prepared for.
An important social issue also arises from the implementation of online voting called the “Digital Divide.” (Internet World Stats) The Digital Divide refers to the “differing amount of information between those who have access to the Internet and those who do not have access.” (Internet World Stats) As much as we would like to believe that everyone has access to technology the reality of this statement is false. We tend to forget about those of lower income who may not be able to afford computers or smartphones. We cannot forget about the remaining minority of Americans who do not have a computer or...

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