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E vote post office No e-vote option for the Swiss parliamentary election

Computer and a paper ballot

Swiss Post says its new system will be available from 2020.

(Keystone/Martial Trezzini)

Swiss Post has suspended its e-voting system effectively spelling the end of the online trials with the current technology for the October parliamentary elections.

The state-owned company said it took the decision after the government announced last week  that it will drop plans to introduce e-voting as an official voting channel for the time being.

However, Swiss Post pledged to develop a new, updated version with universal verifiability available from 2020, according to statementexternal link on Friday.

The current system of Swiss Post has been in use in four cantons on a trial basis, notably the registered expat Swiss community living around the world.

Last month, a rival system developed by canton Geneva and used by three other cantons, was also withdrawn with immediate effect.

The moves come amid increasing opposition against e-voting for data security reasons.

Limited trials with e-voting have been underway since 2004 but technical problems over the past two years undermined the public support in the technology.

The Organisation of the Swiss Abroadexternal link representing the interests of the about 760,000 registered expatriate Swiss citizens has accused the government of denying them their democratic rights.

Many expats argue the postal vote or travelling back to Switzerland to cast their ballot are not realistic options for them.

Direct democracy The status and stakes of e-voting in Switzerland

The debate around the introduction of e-voting for Swiss citizens at home and abroad has rumbled on for almost two decades. It’s not likely to end ...

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