[E-voting] [colm@stdlib.net: [letter to the editor] ICTE and E-voting]

Fergal Daly fergal at esatclear.ie
Mon Mar 8 10:56:49 GMT 2004

Very nice but I think you went a bit cap-happy with

"Irish Computer Science Academics" and "Irish Computer Professionals"


On Mon, Mar 08, 2004 at 10:40:03AM +0000, Colm MacCarthaigh wrote:
> Here's my response anyway
> ----- Forwarded message from Colm MacCarthaigh <colm at stdlib.net> -----
> From: Colm MacCarthaigh <colm at stdlib.net>
> Reply-To: colm at stdlib.net
> Date: Mon, 8 Mar 2004 10:38:45 +0000
> To: independent.letters at unison.independent.ie
> Subject: [letter to the editor] ICTE and E-voting
> 				  			Colm MacC?rthaigh
> 				  Irish Citizens for Trustworthy E-voting
> 							[address sanitized]
> 						  Phone:	[number]
> Sir,
> 	In response to the letter of Mr. Derek Mooney regarding Irish
> Citizens for Trustworthy E-voting (ICTE), I would like to answer Mr. 
> Mooney's questions regarding our group. Firstly, ICTE is a non-aligned 
> group of over one hundred independent citizens, technical and legal 
> experts. Mr. Mooney is fully welcome to join and partipate in our 
> discussions. Anyone may do so by joining our open e-mail list available 
> at:
> 	http://evoting.cs.may.ie/discussion.shtml
> I take issue with the statement that ICTE are misrepresenting the truth,
> ICTE's position has always been that Electronic Voting is categorically
> unsafe and unverifiable without a paper record of our votes; verified by
> us as voters. This position is endorsed by the Irish Computer Society
> (the professional body for Irish Computer Professionals), the
> Association for Computing Machinery and, at the last count, over 200
> Irish Computer Science Academics. I can assure Mr. Mooney that we are
> not luddites, but that we are experienced computer professionals fully
> aware of the risks inherent in any computer-based system.
> Mr. Mooney claims that our calls for a paper record would lead to the
> "old" problems of human error and random surplus tranfers - perhaps Mr.
> Mooney is not aware that the Electronic Voting system to be used in June
> will use randomised surplus distribution and, like any excercise of
> computer programming, is critically prone to human error. Additionally,
> it is our belief that the system has not been tested adequately - for
> example, there have been no end-to-end tests involving all components to
> be used in the summer.
> While we genuinely regret our concerns coming to notice so late in the
> day, members of ICTE have been highlighting the concerns surrounding
> E-voting for over 3 years. We have had questions asked of the Department
> in the Houses of the Oireachtas, theses researched and written and
> related issues raised with our elected representatives. 
> As responsible I.T. professionals, it is difficult for us to criticise a
> technical system about which there is little information available. It
> should be noted that, to date, over 18 months and Euro 1300 has been
> spent on Freedom of Information requests and appeals to the Information
> Commissioner in efforts to obtain the information neccessary to analyse
> the system. 
> ICTE would fully welcome transparency and democratic accountability, and 
> we invite Mr. Mooney and your readership to ask the simple question;
> How will I be sure that my vote has been recorded accurately? Paperless
> Electronic Voting affords us no opportunity to verify that for
> ourselves; is this transparent and democratically accountable?
> 				Colm MacC?rthaigh
> 				Irish Citizens for Trustworthy E-voting
> -- 
> Colm MacC?rthaigh                        Public Key: colm+pgp at stdlib.net
> ----- End forwarded message -----
> -- 
> Colm MacC?rthaigh                        Public Key: colm+pgp at stdlib.net
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