BALTIMORE--()--Scytl, the leading provider of secure election technology worldwide, announced today the successful use of its Internet voting solution during the election of the Governor of Mexico City, held on July 1. By allowing the Mexican citizens residing abroad to vote online, Mexico has become the first country in Latin America to allow Internet voting in binding political elections.
“The high level of voter satisfaction after the closing of the polls reinforces our commitment to ensuring full voter enfranchisement through innovation.”
With the aim of fostering voter participation but also cutting costs, the Electoral Institute of Mexico City (IEDF) decided to implement Internet voting as an additional channel to postal voting during the election for Governor. The voters interested in trying the new voting system had to register online beforehand to get their voting credentials that would allow them to vote during the 4-day online election period from June 28 to July 1. By the closing of the Election Day polls, over 20% of the votes cast in this election by overseas voters were cast online in this first ever usage of Internet voting in Latin America.
“We are very pleased with the results of this first experience with Internet voting in a binding election which was an outstanding success”, said Néstor Vargas, Election Commissioner at the IEDF. “Scytl’s technology worked flawlessly and their team showed great professionalism throughout the project”.
The online voting authentication system was based on credentials that voters could obtain through an innovative system that was also provided by Scytl. This technology, by preventing the sending of sensitive information online in clear text and therefore keeping potential attackers from gaining access to the information, reinforced the security of the authentication process. Once authenticated, voters were smoothly guided through the voting process that allowed them to choose their candidate for Governor, review their vote prior to casting their ballot and obtain a special “counted-as-cast” verification slip that informed them that their ballot was recorded by the system. This verification slip could also be used by the voters to validate, after the counting was completed, whether their cast ballot was included in the final count, thus enhancing the validation and transparency of the voting process.
“I would have never been able to participate in this important election if it had not been for the Internet voting system implemented by the IEDF”, said Jaime G., an overseas voter who used the system. “It was easy, convenient and fast and I would strongly recommend it for the future”.
Scytl’s Internet voting software was audited prior to the start of the project by Telefónica Security Engineering from Mexico who determined that the technology was compliant with the security standards established by the IEDF. In addition, election observers as well as leaders of Mexican communities abroad, representatives of political parties, public institutions and of State Election Management Bodies who observed the election process praised the efficiency and transparency of the implemented system.
The speed with which the results were published also set a precedent in the country as it took the IEDF only 10 minutes to process the electronic votes. Electronic votes were tallied using Scytl’s unique process that decrypts online votes and breaks the correlation between the vote and the voter after the initial voter authentication, protecting voter privacy at all times.
“We are very proud to have provided our Internet voting technology to the IEDF that has set a milestone in Latin America’s election history,” said Pere Valles, Scytl’s CEO. “The high level of voter satisfaction after the closing of the polls reinforces our commitment to ensuring full voter enfranchisement through innovation.”
Mexico’s use of Scytl’s internet voting platform follows the successful usage of the same technology in France earlier this summer when French citizens residing abroad used Scytl’s online voting solution to directly elect 11 members of the national parliament in an election where over 55% of expat voters chose to cast their ballots online rather than vote by mail or in-person.
Scytl is a leading provider of state-of-the-art election technology to governments worldwide in countries that include the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Norway, Switzerland, Austria, South Africa, Bosnia-Herzegovina, United Arab Emirates, India and Australia. Scytl is based in Barcelona with offices in Baltimore, Tampa, Toronto, New Delhi, Athens, Kiev and London. Scytl is a portfolio company of leading international VC funds Nauta Capital, Balderton Capital and Spinnaker SCR. More information is available at www.scytl.com.