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Re: COTS scope



Herb --

I would like to add my voice to Vince's with regard to the
attempted replacement of our sub-group's work by material submitted
by Sandy, who isn't even a member of P1583. We were offended
at the meeting when it was suggested that Sandy replace us
as the co-chairs of the working group, and that materials be
fed to him, rather than us.  We had asked NUMEROUS TIMES for
input, so if that is going to be provided, it should be to
Vince and myself, not Sandy. Sandy is welcome to make suggestions,
of course, but not as a co-chair of the COTS-STG. We had also
provided material from our sub-committee for the draft document
that was not included, despite REPEATED requests to do so, and
this situation continues to be remiss.

Now it seems that the entire standard will be compromised through
COTS exemptions.  Sandy's comment "code review of COTS software
cannot ensure that the COTS firmware/software is failsafe"
could be equally applied to the entire voting product --
why bother to have code review at all???  BECAUSE white box
AND black box testing are NECESSARY to reveal different
sorts of problems, such as VULNERABILITIES.  Additionally,
the code MUST be available in order to provide assurances
and evidence if later problems arise. There are certainly
ways in which vendors can contract with suppliers to provide
their code -- the choices they make can/should include products
that already are open to review (such as Linux or BSD-based).

The bottom line is that there's no point in having a voting
system standard if parts of the ballot casting and tabulation
system are going to be exempt. It is bad enough that the standard
does not require any auditability feature to provide independent
recounts -- but to further allow non-inspected components, just
makes the whole thing a joke.

I seriously hope that this issue can be resolved appropriately,
Rebecca Mercuri.