E-voting is an election system that allows a voter to record his or her secure and secret ballot electronically. In 2004, it's estimated that approximately 30 percent of the voting population in the United States used some form of e-voting technology, including direct electronic recording (DER) touch screen s or optical scanner s, to record their vote for President. Electronic votes are stored digitally in a storage medium such as a tape cartridge, diskette , or smart card before being sent to a centralized location where tabulation programs compile and tabulate results. Advocates of e-voting point out that electronic voting can reduce election costs and increase civic participation by making the voting process more convenient. Critics maintain that without a paper trail, recounts are more difficult and electronic ballot manipulation, or even poorly-written programming code, could affect election results.