Recently, governments are experiencing challenges regarding electoral integrity. Social media platforms manipulation, online extremism, and misinformation are the leading cause of electoral integrity challenge. However, the report is calling upon international authorities, politicians, and platforms to change the reforms and make policies to tackle the problem.
The incline of social media platforms is causing and will cause more harm to free boards and elector integrity; this is according to a report by the Kofu Annan Commission on Elections and Democracy in the Digital Age. Representatives from lawmakers, tech industries, and academics participated in the making of the report. The report urges the state government to create a global coalition responsible for tackling social media influences on campaigns and elections. Also, it calls the governments to come up with an election vulnerability index that can determine elections prone to misinformation or interference.
Around the planet, election security is becoming a significant concern due to the merging of physical and digital worlds. Starting Wednesday in a Washington state district, voters will be eligible to vote through their smartphones for the first US elections. Past attempts to introduce tech voting in the Seattle area fell into the deep sea. Hackers from the University of Michigan took over the online voting system changing vote tallies in 2010 during trials. Such acts prompted citizens claiming the online voting platform was insecure and was prone to hacking. However, the US government is looking forward to increasing the number of voters by introducing the tech in the Washington DC area.
The commission also claims that in developing states like Kenya, Nigeria, and the Philippian’s things are far from good. Adherent media institutions, distrust among citizens, and pre-existing divergence are the significant causes of vulnerability in electoral integrity. The commission urges such governments to take implement laws that can tackle party dominance on social media platforms. Also, to come up with guidelines that govern the political ads. Google is one of the media platforms working to succumb to the misinformation and manipulation challenge by regulating political ads.
According to the commission, candidates who promised not to use deceptive campaign traditions are the ones entitled to buy ads from social media platforms. However, Facebook is in denial of this rule as it added the number of ads bought by politicians. Kofi Annan, the former UN Sec-General, created the commission, which included members of states, media, and the academy and tech department. Its mandate is to equip policymakers globally with tools to counter the fast-growing tech generation.