Title: Adoption of i-voting infrastructure: addressing network-level cybersecurity breaches

Authors: Wilson Nwankwo; Paschal U. Chinedu; Florence U. Masajuwa; Christian C. Njoku; Simon E. Imoisi

Addresses: Department of Computer Science, Edo State University Uzairue, Edo State, Nigeria ' Department of Computer Engineering, Edo State University Uzairue, Nigeria ' Faculty of Law, Edo State University Uzairue, Nigeria ' Department of Computer Science, Aminu Sale College of Education Azare, Bauchi State, Nigeria ' Faculty of Law, Edo State University Uzairue, Nigeria

Abstract: Internet voting (i-voting), a form of e-voting, may emerge as a potential substitute for traditional ballot-based systems. This paper addresses potential cybersecurity concerns using the sociotechnical approach and emphasised on the careful design of secure network components on which the deployment of i-voting platform thrives. Prior to such design, the various threats and cyber-attacks contemplated in an i-voting network infrastructure were categorised in line with the three major network abstractions, i.e., the core, distribution, and access levels. Configurations to mitigate network-level security issues were integrated into a network model constructed (using the eNSP tool) to support an i-voting application designed with the ASP.Net core framework. The system provided a platform to conduct penetration testing to expose any inherent security leaks in the i-voting network. From the unsuccessful penetration tests, we conclude that with appropriate cybersecurity strategy implemented, cyber-resilience and trust might be assured in an i-voting infrastructure. The implication would be a substantial cut in the expenditure during elections as well as entrenchment of public trust.

Keywords: electronic voting; internet voting; i-voting; e-voting; cyber-attacks; cyber resilience; voting systems.

DOI: 10.1504/EG.2023.130582

Electronic Government, an International Journal, 2023 Vol.19 No.3, pp.273 - 303

Accepted: 06 Jun 2021
Published online: 01 May 2023 *

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