Need 100M pesos? Be a Hacker

Do you need 100M pesos? Well, if Sen. Alan Cayetano’s proposal will be backed by the other lawmakers then, let’s all try our hands at being a hacker. Why? Read the following article from Christina Mendez of the Philippine Star: Hackers wanted; P100-million reward .

Excerpts from the article include:

Opposition Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano is proposing that about P100 million out of the P11-billion poll automation fund be used as a reward to people who can hack the machines to be used in next year’s automated elections.

Well, Senator, you have just opened the country to vulnerable attacks {sigh}. Just imagine the world’s hackers reading the article, doing the math, and realizing how big they could make out of this! Don’t you think that it is too premature to claim that the system is hack-proof when the company to make the program/system is not even known yet? Besides, the almighty Pentagon and the FBI had been victims of hackers before…so, the country can dare to make silly statements as this? And a reward that many of the country’s citizens would die for just to get their hands on? Had I any IT brain in me, I’d seriously think of hacking the system!

“For the country, we cannot afford another six years or longer of instability because of questions on the elections. So we thought of a direct assurance for our people that automation would be credible,” Cayetano said.

“We thought of way to address this… (and use the P100 million) as a reward to computer experts, technology experts and even to hackers to show if the system has any vulnerability,” Cayetano explained.

The money will be taken out of the P11-billion appropriation recently approved by Congress for automation.

Cayetano said the Comelec would also be asked to outline the rules and regulations covering the reward, with P10 million as the minimum reward for every successful attempt to hack into the poll automation system.

In pushing for this, Cayetano cited a statement made by Comelec Executive Director Jose Tolentino, who was quoted by the media to have declared that “by the time a hacker gets into our system, the election is over.”

No, the country may not afford another 6 years of political instability but we can’t also afford to waste money. And yes, for a country that could not afford to waste money, we’ll be too stupid to dole out that 100M for a hacker to do the job. Have you ever been on a security briefing on hacking and the internet, Senator?

“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’s resolution read.

Yes, the intention is noble and right, of course. However, the reward is too much, too big, and too tantalizing not to be taken…

Hmmm…I have a proposal…Why don’t you pay someone to hack the sites of those who the country owes money from – to erase our debt and all. The 100M reward will be very useful and appropriate, then! Or perhaps, the intended reward be used to pay – for real – the teachers who serve during the elections and get paid several months after the elections are over!

Please, Senator, the money would be useful when used elsewhere. You can even choose to reward your hacker but the amount should definitely be not as big as 100M!