"It is enough that the people know there was an election. The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything." - Joseph Stalin
Follow My Vote's ambition is to build a secure online voting platform that will allow for greater election transparency and restore faith in the democratic process.
Since the dawn of democracy, elections throughout the world have been plagued with accusations of illegitimacy. As democratic societies across the globe are beginning to adopt technology to improve the efficiency of the election process, many people are discovering that certain types of technology can be extremely vulnerable, which may have the potential to unfairly influence the outcome of elections.
Only those that are on the forefront of technological advancement realize today what the majority of people will become aware of tomorrow, which is that there was a technological solution that was recently introduced to mankind that has the ability to solve both of these critical issues: the lack of transparency in our elections and the lack of security of our election systems.
Using this advanced technology we will be able to gain transparency into our elections, without compromising voter privacy, and have a way to mathematically prove that the elections results are accurate. Also, at the voter’s request, there would even be a way to allow a voter to cast their vote online in an election and follow their vote into the ballot box to ensure that their vote was safely and securely stored without being changed or altered in any way.
Typically, when cutting edge technology is introduced to the masses, there is an increased financial burden placed on early adopters whom are willing to pay the higher cost in order to take advantage of the additional benefits the new technology provides. Contrary to this trend, this particular technology could actually drastically reduce the costs of our elections and free up taxpayer money to be spent on other extremely important aspects of our society, such as improving the quality of our education systems or rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure.
Increasing voter turnout would also be a likely byproduct of bringing elections securely online. The reality is that, in the past, many companies have tried to host elections online but have failed only due to the technological approach they decided to take and not because it can’t be done. If we can overcome the misconception that online voting cannot be done safely and securely, we could encourage a whole new wave of voters to conveniently cast their vote online from anywhere in the world.
Why? Why introduce a new voting system that could cut costs, increase voter turnout, make voting more convenient and accessible, ensure elections are honest, and reassure voters that their voice was heard by their government?
Because we can. Because we now have the technology to make all this possible. All we need from you is your support to make this a reality.
Will you join us?
With the ability to audit the ballot box and watch elections progress in real time, Follow My Vote's platform offers unparalleled electoral transparency.
Let’s face it. No one except for election officials really know what happens to your vote once you cast it, so it’s not surprising that more and more research is showing that citizens don’t vote because they don’t believe their votes count. Understandably, these frustrated voters are losing confidence in our democratic system.
Enter Follow My Vote’s online voting platform. Using a webcam and a government-issued ID, voters can remotely and securely log in and vote for their desired candidates. After they’ve selected their candidates, they can use their unique Voter ID to quite literally open the ballot box, locate their vote, and check that it is both present and correct. Additionally, voters can then watch the election progress in real time as votes are cast. What’s more, Follow My Vote’s platform allows for an indecisive voter to return to the system and switch his or her votes at any time before the election deadline closes.
The ability to change your vote, coupled with the ability to observe the election in real time, has major implications for the current two-party system. Now, voters who would like to vote for a third party candidate are likely not to for fear of wasting their vote on a candidate who is not likely to win. In some instances, voting for a third party draws votes from one of the two dominant parties that has similar views and increases the chances the opposition party will win. With the ability to change their vote, voters can counteract this vote-splitting effect and shake up the current two-party system.
Follow My Vote’s platform offers convenience which will likely improve voter turnout among younger generations and provide troops abroad, the elderly, and the disabled a viable alternative to current voting methods. Democracy can’t function if almost half of citizens aren’t voting; and in this regard Follow My Vote is striving to restore the democratic tradition.
Another advantage Follow My Vote’s system offers is cost-effectiveness. In the United States, millions of dollars of taxpayer money are spent on line items such as printing ballots and mailing voter information alone. These are unnecessary costs that will be reduced over time by moving voting online, as Follow My Vote plans to do.
Follow My Vote's software comes with the security of blockchain technology and is open-source so that anyone can audit the software’s code. Keep reading to learn more about blockchain technology and why we believe that decentralization is the key to secure online voting.
Our software is open-source, so anyone can audit the code.
Blockchain technology ensures that the ballot box cannot be hacked.
Vote from any device- no need to wait in long poll lines.
The U.S. needlessly spends millions of dollars on ballots each year.
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Blockchain technology already secures billions of dollars around the world. We believe it should secure our votes as well. Using the unparalleled security of blockchain technology, we are poised to disrupt the established voting industry by offering a more cost-effective technologically superior solution.
Blockchain technology was first developed in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto. Since its release, it has been used as the basis for thousands of crytocurrencies around the world, including Bitcoin and BitShares. It has also achieved recognition worldwide as the most secure of the available online database management technologies. By incorporating the security of the Blockchain into our voting system’s design, Follow My Vote has quickly become an industry trailblazer.
Blockchain technology is distributed data storage that holds a public ledger of transactions. The ledger can record many transactions: monetary transactions, property transfer, and even ballot storage. All transactions that occur on a standard Blockchain are verified and signed with cryptography to ensure security and anonymity. Follow My Vote's system further improves security by using military-grade cryptography, also known as elliptic curve cryptography. Simply put, cryptography provides security and privacy while the public ledger adds transparency and accountability.
Our technology partner, BitShares, is an industry-leading expert in blockchain technology.
Decentralization is one of the most important attributes of blockchain technology. A decentralized system provides Follow My Vote with the appropriate security protocols necessary for large-scale elections. Illustrated above, a traditional processing network has one point of centralization. This is the point a hacker would attack to corrupt a system. In a decentralized system there is no single point of weakness. This creates a system that is extremely low risk of being compromised.
At Follow My Vote, we are a team of innovators with the mission of using blockchain technology to revolutionize today's obsolete and vulnerable voting systems.
Follow My Vote began originally as a polling system designed to ensure that elected representatives were truly voting in the interests of their constituents. However, Follow My Vote soon entered into a joint venture with BitShares; effectively shifting its focus to the development of a verifiable online voting platform secured with the BitShares blockchain technology. In order to ensure the success of the venture, Follow My Vote moved from their previous location with NuSpark into a shared space in Virginia Tech's Corporate Research Center.
Since then, Follow My Vote has focused on product and business development and has forged ties with election officials and voting organizations around the globe. In late 2014, Follow My Vote joined the California Association of Voting Officials (CAVO), an organization which has been a critical proponent of the open-source voting movement for over a decade. Follow My Vote also completed a proof of concept, which has been successfully demonstrated at several events. More recently, through its alliance with CAVO Follow My Vote has jointed the Open Source Initiative (OSI) in an effort to promote open-source software development.
Follow My Vote continues making strides in advocating online voting technology and has been featured in several notable journals such as Bitcoin Magazine, WSLS10, and the Roanoke Times.
We're looking for friends of all types. Whether you are an elected official, a fan, an interested techie, or even a skeptic, we want to hear from you!
We know we can't do it alone. We need allies in the fight for election transparency through online voting, and so are looking to forge a network of organizations, elected officials, and general supporters. We are also looking for new team members that can bring fresh perspectives and backgrounds to the Follow My Vote team. Anyone interested in trying out our system should fill out a demo request. Don't be shy - We look forward to hearing from you.
Follow My Vote was born on the 4th of July in 2012 and founded on the principles of democratic freedom as a tribute to the Founding Fathers of the United States.
We are a nonpartisan organization on a mission to restore the people's faith in the democratic process. We are committed to using technology to improve upon the security, transparency, and convenience of voting systems that are currently in place today. Ultimately, we plan to push for provably honest elections here and throughout the rest of the world. After all, in an election it’s not who votes that counts, it’s who counts the votes!