One of the toughest hurdles blockchain technology has to overcome may very well be convincing governments of its usefulness in the election process.
VTSIOM, Russia’s state-run public opinion research center, has decided to use blockchain technology to collect data from exit polls in the country’s upcoming presidential elections. This will make it one of the first instances where blockchain has been applied in elections.
“Our project provides for storage of the data that we receive during exit polls at polling stations in a special blockchain bank. This will prevent any external changes to the information, decrease the effectiveness of hacker attacks and ensure the transparency of the data collection and aggregation,” the organization said.
The project will be managed by 2chain, a company that specializes in consultancy services for blockchain technology and ICOs.
VTSIOM appears to be interested in promoting technologies that make the election process safer and more efficient, saying that blockchain would also hedge against technical difficulties that often occur during times of data collection and transfer.
In general, Russia has had a warm relationship with blockchain. The country recently saw the launch of a school offering lessons in the technology. The school, which opened in Moscow-based IT hub Phystechpark, is the first in Russia to teach programming essentials specifically oriented towards the development of applications using the Ethereum blockchain. The project has even recruited Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin as a consultant, which gives the school a significant degree of legitimacy.
VTSIOM is far from being the only state company in Russia to have fallen in love with blockchain.
Sberbank started a research lab early this year with the aim of spurring blockchain-related activity among local companies and communities. Before that, the bank successfully carried out a blockchain pilot that involved a transaction underpinned by IBM’s technology.