Digital Privacy

Scottish Affairs Committee recommendation on e-Counting

The House of Commons Scottish Affairs Committee has released its report on the experience of the Scottish elections and unsurprisingly they are worried about e-counting. Last year ORG sent observers to the Scottish elections and observed many problems including the SNP nearly failing to win because of an Excel spreadsheet. The Scottish Affairs Committee official report agrees with many of ORG’s findings, saying the following about e-counting:

There has been a severe loss of confidence in e-counting. The experience of its use in the Scottish Parliament and local government elections revealed a fundamental lack of transparency. The checks and balances of a manual system must be retained. Candidates and observers must have access to ballot papers in order to ensure that procedures are followed correctly and that recounts can be asked for. Until these problems are resolved, we do not support the use of e-counting for future elections.

Read the Scottish Affairs Committee’s full report.

This year, ORG deployed just under thirty volunteer election monitors to observe the effects of e-counting on the London elections. We will publish an official report of our findings in June.