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Contribution Details

Type Master's Thesis
Scope Discipline-based scholarship
Title Secure Deployment and Configuration Management for a Decentralized Remote Electronic Voting System
Organization Unit
  • Roger Staubli
  • Christian Killer
  • Bruno Bastos Rodrigues
  • English
Institution University of Zurich
Faculty Faculty of Business, Economics and Informatics
Date July 2021
Abstract Text The integrity and validity of elections are cornerstones in each modern democracy. With the introduction of e-voting systems, and in particular, remote electronic voting (REV) systems, completely new and unique challenges arise. REV systems allow citizen to cast their votes from a remote, uncontrolled device. To securely provide such a system, high privacy and verifiability requirements need to be fulfilled. As privacy and verifiability requirements are in direct opposition, wide research has already been conducted to provide cryptographic protocols in order to fulfill these requirements. However, as research mainly focuses on theoretical protocols and on proving the fulfillment of these requirements, less effort is made to provide implementations or productional deployments of such systems. Since the security of an application is only as strong as its weakest component, all aspects need to be carefully analyzed. In particular, a reproducible deployment of a REV system can provide a starting point to test the security, scalability, and usability of voting protocols in an end-to-end fashion. This work focuses on the deployment of Provotum, a decentralized REV system. To provide a reproducible and testable application, a modular deployment framework was designed and implemented. This framework allows configuring and setting up the whole infrastructure with infrastructure-as-a-code (IAAC) and consists of a continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) pipeline, a private Docker registry, a vulnerability scanner, and a monitoring service. Within this infrastructure, it is possible to build Provotum securely and deploy it in a decentralized environment. Finally, the infrastructure and the deployed application are evaluated according to security, scalability, and usability. In addition, a literature research was carried out to identify core privacy and verifiability properties of REV systems.
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