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How Will The Coronavirus Affect the 2020 Election?

by Funto Omojola   July 6, 2020

The United States has now seen its highest recorded number of novel coronavirus cases as the number of infections surpasses 2.5 million at the time of writing, the highest of any other country. Many states across the U.S. have paused their reopening stages and the nation grapples with the virus’s potential lasting effects on the economy, social structures, and political processes.


Image source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The adoption of Artificial Intelligence (AI) continues to surge across industries and innovative technology is making the transition to digital life easier, as more remote businesses necessitate digital changes. Such technology could also be crucial to the inevitable pandemic-led shift in the new ways that people will have to vote, come November, and beyond. 

COVID-19 has had significant impacts on the 2020 presidential election since March, as up to 19 states have postponed their primaries in response to CDC mandates regarding social gatherings. 

And as many numbers of states continue to implement and flush out extensive vote-by-mail processes that have become essential, some experts even predict that digital two-factor authentication voting could soon become the norm.

But while new financial technology could potentially aid with secure information exchange, protection from fraud, as well as with network transparency and analytics for security and compliance, there are wide-spread concerns regarding digital voting. 

A number of voting organizations have expressed concern regarding voters’ privacy and how trustworthy election results will be in the new era of non-physical ballot-casting. For example, potentially compromised devices, security flaws, and the threat of internet hackers pose large threats to the integrity of any new digital voting processes. 

Plus, a new research study by the  Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Michigan shows the inherent risks of already existing digital voting products, maintaining that they “represent a severe risk to election security and could allow attackers to alter election results without detection.”

 
Funto Omojola  Writer
Funto Omojola is a tech and finance writer. She has written for MarketWatch, VICE, and the New York Post.