Parliament: Internet voting not feasible, says Chan Chun Sing

Mr Chan Chun Sing said online voting was not feasible due to its various vulnerabilities.
Mr Chan Chun Sing said online voting was not feasible due to its various vulnerabilities. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - The Elections Department has decided it will not offer overseas Singaporeans the option to cast their ballots online, after studying the feasibility of Internet voting, Minister in the Prime Minister's Office Chan Chun Sing said on Wednesday (April 6).

"While Internet voting may appeal to some, it has various challenges like difficulties in authenticating voters, preventing impersonation and ensuring voting secrecy," he said.

An online voting system is also vulnerable to hacking, and will make an audit of election results more difficult, he added.

Mr Chan was responding to a question in Parliament from Non-Constituency MP Dennis Tan about the possibility of overseas Singaporeans using their SingPass accounts to vote online.

While the use of SingPass provides a measure of authentication, it is not a foolproof method as someone may get his hands on another's account password and this is a risk that cannot be overcome entirely, Mr Chan said.

"We all know the challenges with any Internet transaction, and that's the authentication and verification of the person's identity," he added.

"For now, voting by paper ballot at polling stations is still the simplest and most transparent method of voting that can ensure the integrity and secrecy of our voting process."

More than 3,400 Singaporeans abroad cast their votes in last year's general election.

They voted at 10 overseas polling stations in London, Tokyo, Beijing, Washington, Hong Kong, Shanghai, San Francisco, New York, Canberra, and Dubai.