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CAYETANO CHALLENGES HACKERS
Hack poll machines and win P100M

By Maila Ager, Michael Lim Ubac
INQUIRER.net, Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 18:09:00 04/17/2009

Filed Under: Infotech, Eleksyon 2010

MANILA, Philippines?Senator Alan Peter Cayetano has filed a resolution setting aside P100 million as an incentive to anyone who can convincingly demonstrate the weakness of the automated poll system.

Cayetano, at a press conference Friday, said that if any IT expert can establish that the system to be used in the 2010 polls is not secure from fraud and tampering, ?Comelec should cancel the contract, save the P11 billion and sue for damages the contractor in the event of such successful hacking.?

He said he would rather revert to the manual counting of votes if the computerized system would lead to wholesale cheating.

Cayetano said the resolution, which he would file on Monday, was in response to a statement by a Comelec official challenging cyber security experts to test the system for weaknesses.

?The most effective way to test if indeed a system is credible, reliable and tamper-proof or fraud-proof is to offer a sizable prize to whoever can hack and convincingly show the weaknesses of the system,? Cayetano said in his draft resolution.

?To make the said incentive system work, there is a need to authorize the Commission on Elections to set aside the amount not exceeding P100 million to be utilized as a prize money for the said successful hacker,? he said.

If the system is successfully hacked, the Comelec will then be authorized to cancel the contract and sue the winning bidder.

Despite repeated assurances poll automation will significantly curb cheating, Cayetano said there are fears it might actually induce a ?bigger and more sophisticated method of election cheating if the system is vulnerable to manipulation.?



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