COUNT: Pre-poll votes for Fisher and Fairfax being counted in Maroochydore. Are we up for online voting yet after the Census system was exposed?
COUNT: Pre-poll votes for Fisher and Fairfax being counted in Maroochydore. Are we up for online voting yet after the Census system was exposed? Scott Sawyer

Census fail: So are we really ready for online voting?

MUCH was made of the need for electronic voting after the recent Federal Election which saw length delays as the country waited to learn who would be its new leader.

But Tuesday night's epic Census debacle has curbed some of the enthusiasm for online voting as the realisation of just how vulnerable data can be hits home.

University of the Sunshine Coast political lecturer Bronwyn Stevens said there'd always been problems trying to plan off-site, online voting and the Census hacking affair had only reinforced how potentially dangerous online voting could be.

"I think it certainly could put the nail in (the coffin of) off-site, online voting for quite some time,” she said.

"We're still a long way short of doing the whole election online.”

Online security expert Dr David Lacey felt there was still scope to explore online voting but said it was a good time to have the debate.

Fairfax MP Ted O'Brien said the Census issues highlighted how important it was to get any online voting system right before rolling it out.

His Fisher colleague Andrew Wallace said the Census breach showed we weren't ready for electronic voting until the system could repel hackers and handle the volume of usage.