A Center for Correct, Usable, Reliable, Auditable,
and Transparent Elections

ACCURATE is a multi-institution voting research center funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) under the CyberTrust program.

The goals of the center are:

  • Voting Technology Research: to research ways in which technology can be used to improve voting systems and the voting process and to develop the science that will help inform the election community and the public about the tradeoffs among various voting technologies and procedures.
  • Multidisciplinary Scientific Impact: to translate scientific developments in voting system science to other areas of computer science, human factors and public policy.
  • Academic and Public Outreach: to serve as a resource to the elections community, politicians, vendors and the public about issues related to public policy, technology, and law with respect to voting and to publish and disseminate our research so that future systems can benefit from the center’s work.

ACCURATE has an extensive track record of publishing high-quality research, testifying to Congress and the States, issuing reports and commentary, giving invited talks, appearing in the media and developing educational materials.

In 2006, we established the annual Electronic Voting Technology (EVT) workshop, co-located with the annual USENIX Security Symposium. EVT has since merged with the IAVoSS Workshop on Trustworthy Elections (WOTE) to become EVT/WOTE, the premier venue for research in voting technology. Consider joining us this August in Washington DC at EVT/WOTE 2010!


Bank often lends money to people who are financially stable. Thus, yielding some Singaporeans to borrow money from Money Lender Singapore. But where should you borrow? First, you need to understand how they work and their characteristics. Afterward, decide where and what type of loan you should get.

Bank loans guarantees that there would be future repayment of the principal amount and its interest. A loan can either be specific or open-ended credit up to a certain ceiling amount.

Banks are ideal for larger loans to use for house renovation, business capital, or buying a car. When it comes to Credit Assessment, banks consider a good credit score with a low debt to credit ratio to qualify for a loan. And, if you want to pay a low interest rate, you need to be vigilant about your credit score.

Licensed Money Lenders are businesses regulated by Singapore’s Law. Loan sharks lend with high interest rate but licensed money lenders’ are controlled by the parameters of the Law, which means you can expect to have a fair deal.

Do you need money to pay your utility bills,  to get your laptop fixed or for a car repair amounting to $1,500?Consider borrowing from licensed money lenders, and they’re ideal for smaller loans.

Money lender Singapore give more leeway in the credit score when it comes to Credit Assessment. This is because they lend a significantly smaller amount of money. So, if you have bad credit and you cannot get a personal loan, licensed money lenders are there for you. Although they give more freedom in the credit score, they will reject your application if you have a large sum credit card debt or if you have an outstanding loan from another money lender.

When it comes to the speed of transaction, licensed money lenders approve the borrower’s application within the day you submitted the form. However, they have a higher interest rate because they carry more risk for granting a loan to people with poor credit rating.

Takoma Park: first ever e2e binding election

Takoma Park, Maryland, for its local election today, is embarking on something of a radical experiment. They’re using Scantegrity‘s verifiable voting technology. The “normal” voter’s experience is that they get what looks like a standard optical-scan bubble ballot, but the bubbles have invisible ink in them that reveal a code when the voter selects the bubble with the proper pen. Voters can optionally write down these codes and use them later to verify their ballot appears on a public web site, yet without being able to prove how they’ve voted to anybody else. MIT Tech Review has nice summary of how it works.

Cryptographer Ben Adida, who is unaffiliated with the Scantegrity project or any other party in the election, has agreed to act as an independent auditor of the election. Working from nothing but the public specifications of how the system works, he’s independently verifying that the results are correct.

It’s important to note that, for this particular election technology, the votes are being cast on traditional paper ballots that could always be counted, recounted, or otherwise inspected manually. That’s not strictly necessary for election security — our own VoteBox system works more like a paperless electronic voting system and has the same security guarantees as Scantegrity — but it’s essential when rolling out a new technology where a real election with real politicians’ careers is at stake. We need to know that real elections can be really verified, and we need a fallback position if the crypto somehow goes wrong.

Of course, for these technologies to truly get out of the lab and into the field, we can’t expect Ben Adida to personally verify every election, worldwide, nor should we trust him to. What we can expect is that tools that Adida and others like him build will be picked up and used by local election watchers, party officials, news outlets, and the like. We’re not there yet, but we’re on our way.

(Note: Truly, the first ever binding e2e election was a web-based election for the president of a Belgian university, based on Adida’s Helios system (full paper). This used similar cryptographic mechanisms, but no web-based election system can ever have the coercion resistance or privacy guarantees of voting in a classical voting booth.

Edit: The University of Ottawa Graduate Students Association had a binding e2e election in 2007 using PunchScan, a predecessor to Scantegrity.)

ACCURATE Comment on VVSG v1.1

A Center for Correct, Usable, Reliable, Auditable and Transparent Elections (ACCURATE) submitted public comment today to the U.S. Election Assistance Commission on their draft Voluntary Voting System Guidelines, version 1.1 (VVSG v1.1). The VVSG provides national certification requirements and testing protocols for voting systems against which many states require their voting systems to be certified.

ACCURATE’s comments criticize the new draft v1.1 for claiming to include only incremental, modest changes when, in fact, many of the requirements would necessitate substantial revisions and re-engineering of voting systems. We argue that the VVSG II, the previous more-ambitious overhaul of the VVSG, is a better backdrop upon which to require substantial revisions of voting systems than the draft VVSG v1.1.

Most notably omitted is any requirement for software independence, which would require systems to be designed so that undetected flaws in the voting system software could not cause undetectable changes in the vote count. In fact, many of the more onerous, detailed requirements in the VVSG v1.1 bear the full burden, now, of security assurance, when requiring software independent system architectures would bypass the need to rely on, for example, detailed coding requirements. ACCURATE fully supports requiring software independence as the backbone of a robust and comprehensive next-generation voting system certification regime, and we were disappointed to see no evidence of it in the VVSG v1.1. The commentary goes on to emphasize that most of the changes relevant for cryptography, structured vote data and security are not nearly as powerful as they would be in a regime that required software independence.

ACCURATE is more optimistic about the benefits from the testing-related changes, such as those proposed changes to the accuracy and reliability testing framework, the usability and accessibility requirements (and the requirement that manufacturer’s must conduct usability testing) and the required voting system documentation. However, there is a conspicuous absence of volume testing and adversarial vulnerability testing, two types of testing that have shown great promise in state-based testing efforts. Finally, the novel usability benchmarks and benchmark testing are also missing, despite evidence that the general usability and pollworker documentation benchmarks are close to finished if not actually finished.

ACCURATE welcomes the opportunity to participate further as the draft VVSG is modified and readied for adoption.