Natural Strategic Abilities in Voting Protocols

07/24/2020
by   Wojciech Jamroga, et al.
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Security properties are often focused on the technological side of the system. One implicitly assumes that the users will behave in the right way to preserve the property at hand. In real life, this cannot be taken for granted. In particular, security mechanisms that are difficult and costly to use are often ignored by the users, and do not really defend the system against possible attacks. Here, we propose a graded notion of security based on the complexity of the user's strategic behavior. More precisely, we suggest that the level to which a security property φ is satisfied can be defined in terms of (a) the complexity of the strategy that the voter needs to execute to make φ true, and (b) the resources that the user must employ on the way. The simpler and cheaper to obtain φ, the higher the degree of security. We demonstrate how the idea works in a case study based on an electronic voting scenario. To this end, we model the vVote implementation of the voting protocol for coercion-resistant and voter-verifiable elections. Then, we identify "natural" strategies for the voter to obtain receipt-freeness, and measure the voter's effort that they require. We also look at how hard it is for the coercer to compromise the election through a randomization attack.

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