Saturday, October 30, 2010

EVM activist Hari Prasad Vemuru wins prestigious US award

Hari Krishna Prasad Vemuru revealed security flaws in EVMs. Mr. Prasad is the first Indian to receive the prestigious award.

The San Francisco-based Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a leading civil liberties group, will confer the 2010 Pioneer Award on researcher Hari Prasad, who was recently released on bail after having been jailed for his security work on electronic voting machines.

“Hari Krishna Prasad Vemuru is a security researcher in India who recently revealed security flaws in India's paperless electronic voting machines. He has endured jail time, repeated interrogations, and ongoing political harassment to conduct the first independent security review of India's electronic voting system,” said an EFF statement.

“Prasad spent a year trying to convince election officials to complete such a review, but they insisted that the government-made machines were ‘perfect' and ‘tamperproof.' “Instead of blindly accepting the government's claim, Prasad's international team discovered serious flaws that could alter national election results.

“Prasad hopes to help his country build a transparent and verifiable voting system,” the statement said. The EFF's Pioneer Awards recognise leaders who are extending freedom and innovation on the electronic frontier.

First Indian
Mr. Prasad is the first Indian to receive the prestigious award.

The other three winners are transparency activist Steven Aftergood; public domain scholar James Boyle; legal blogger Pamela Jones and the website Groklaw. The award ceremony will be held at 7:30 pm, November 8, at the 111 Minna Gallery in San Francisco.

Awarded every year since 1992, EFF's Pioneer Awards recognize leaders who are extending freedom and innovation on the electronic frontier. Past honorees include World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee, security expert Bruce Schneier, and the Mozilla Foundation and its chairman Mitchell Baker, among many others.
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