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Netherlands Opts For Manual Vote-Count Amid Cyberattack Fears

Ballots will be counted by hand in the March 15 election after doubts surface over the safety and security of electronic system.

The March 15 parliamentary elections to be held in the Netherlands will not rely on electronic vote tally and instead ballots will be counted by hand, reports Reuters. The decision was made by the Dutch government after security experts voiced concerns that the electronic tallying system used was not secure and could be manipulated by interested parties - possibly Russia.

"Now there are indications that Russians could be interested, for the following elections we must fall back on good old pen and paper," Interior Minister Ronald Plasterk told broadcaster RTL.

He does not expect the manual count to take longer than normal.

Voting in the country is done through paper votes and local votes are counted by hand. However, regional and national votes are tallied electronically through a system that involves installing software on outdated Internet-connected computers through CD-ROM.

Netherland’s decision comes as France and Germany too prepare for elections amid concerns that foreign state-sponsored hackers could manipulate election results.

Read Reuters for details.

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