6,000 Hackers to Try to Break Into Poll Computers

I’m just wondering why do the COMELEC have to do the testing in Singapore pa? If you’re confident enough that you can implement a hacker-proof system, why not do it here in the Philippines (PI Flashbulb, are you there?!)
Taken from http://www.gmanews.tv/story/51247/6000-hackers-to-try-to-break-into-poll-computers

Some 6,000 Filipino hackers based in Singapore are set to try to break into the Internet voting system that the Commission on Elections will pilot-test in the said country on July 20.

Comelec Commissioner Florentino Tuason said Monday that the Filipino information technology experts based in Singapore have signified their interest to try to hack into the system “in order to strengthen it and to prove that the system is secure.”

“We met with them and they said they are 6,000-strong and most of them will try to hack the system,” Tuason said, adding the IT experts will be doing it “professionally not for personal gain or personal advertisement or personal upliftment.”

The Comelec official said Filipino IT experts will send a written report if they penetrated the system and to provide proof that they did.

Tuason added that he International Foundation for Electoral System funded by USAID will also provide auditors before, during and after the pilot test of Internet voting.

“The important phase would be to check the penetration aspect of the system. In other words if there can be hackers to go into it…to hack the system,” he said.

He added the auditors will determine the strengths and weaknesses of the system.

To further test the system, the embassy will allow non-registered voters to try to vote through the Internet.

Tuason expressed confidence in the system which will be implemented by Scytl, a Spanish conglomerate that specializes on election security features. Scytl’s system is being used in the United States and Finland.

“In fact they have already secured a contract, twp contracts, for the 2010 presidential elections in the US. They will participate in the 2010 presidential elections in certain states involving particular group of voters,” he said.

Prior to the formal launching of the pilot study of internet voting in Singapore, a demonstration of the project will be held on Tuesday afternoon at the session hall of the Comelec office in Intramuros, Manila.

The commissioner said after the pilot test, he will prepare a report on the system that will be sent to the Comelec, the Office of the President, and Joint Oversight Committee of the Overseas Absentee Voting which is composed of lawmakers.

“It is up to them to determine whether they will implement it in the 2010 elections,” he said

He added the Internet voting cannot be used in the coming barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections because the system was really fitted for overseas.

Tuason earlier said some P23.5 million or $470,000 has been appropriated for the poll computerization project. -GMANews.TV

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