Feeds

Watchdog boss blasts Britain's e-voting plans

Blighty vote fraud may be worst in Europe

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

The chairman of the Committee on Standards in Public Life yesterday delivered a stinging attack on attempts to modernise the British voting system.

Speaking to the annual seminar of the Association of Electoral Administrators in Brighton, Sir Alistair Graham suggested that electoral fraud has increased sharply as a result of postal voting, and that e-voting should be postponed or scrapped.

"Let me make it clear that I am no Luddite," said Sir Alistair. "Alternative forms of voting may have their place." But, he said democracy was not "a pick 'n' mix commodity...voting is a civic duty, it is not like shopping".

The influential vigilance chief suggested that a decline in turnout could not be fixed by making the voting process easier, and that such initiatives merely opened up backdoors for electoral fraudsters.

He admitted that the number of votes cast in local elections had apparently increased in some areas following the introduction of postal balloting. However, he suggested that perhaps the extra votes had been posted in job lots by corrupt party hacks, rather than by individual stay-at-home citizens.

"Turnout at local elections has increased but can we be sure that it is genuine?"

Sir Alistair also revealed that a delegation from the Council of Europe is currently mulling whether to invoke international monitoring of British elections. The council normally monitors countries in the Balkans and the former USSR; the only western-European nation under examination is Monaco.

Ironically, despite the fact that democracy is a relatively recent innovation for many continental nations, they may – in the council's view – already be better at implementing it than the UK.

Against this background, Sir Alistair suggested that plans to pilot telephone, text, and e-voting during the upcoming May local elections should "be put on hold". He said the current situation was "akin to a bank which secures an individual's transactions but had not verified that individual's identity when he opened his account".

The full speech text is available here (Word document). ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Scrapping the Human Rights Act: What about privacy and freedom of expression?
Justice minister's attack to destroy ability to challenge state
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Hey Brit taxpayers. You just spent £4m on Central London ‘innovation playground’
Catapult me a Mojito, I feel an Digital Innovation coming on
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
EU probes Google’s Android omerta again: Talk now, or else
Spill those Android secrets, or we’ll fine you
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.