CNE signs contract for the purchase of new voting technology

Caracas, March 6, 2004.- The Venezuelan National Electoral Council (CNE) signed a contract with the SBC Consortium for the acquisition of 20.000 voting machines, manufactured by the Italian firm Olivetti Tecnost, according to Smartmatic's specifications and configuration.

The service agreement includes the support and maintenance services, plus a one year guaranty for all machines. The voting machines are expected to start arriving to Venezuela in approximately two weeks, term established in view of the packaging and delivery times.

According to Antonio Mugica, Smartmatic's CEO, "the SAES3000 voting machines will prevent the errors of the past. Furthermore, said machines will generate money savings at short and medium range, by doing without the expensive amount of paper formerly used in the ballot papers".

About SAES3000
The SAES3000 voting machines have been designed to guarantee a complete security and confidentiality of the suffrages, allowing the citizens to express their electoral decision in a fast and easy way, with a zero null-and-void index.

The SAES3000 machines are equipped with touch sensitive LCDs, designed to ease and accelerate the voting process; electronic connectivity, for the automated transmission of the votes to the tabulation centers; and non-sequential and encrypted storage of the votes, in order to ensure up to a 100% system audit and the confidentiality of every single vote.

In addition, each SAES3000 machine has an internal printer, which will record on paper each voter's decision, without revealing the voter's identity. "The physical votes collected at the ballot boxes are a safe support and a verification instance of the information recorded by the electronic media", adds Mugica.

The equipment was manufactured in Italy by Olivetti Tecnost. With a presence in 70 countries, Olivetti Tecnost is the business unit of the Telecom Italy Group for office and systems solutions, and it specializes in banking, point of sales, automated games and electoral systems technology applications.

About Smartmatic

Smartmatic is a multinational company that specializes in the design and end-to-end deployment of complex purpose-specific technology solutions. With an unsurpassed technology base, continuous innovation, and quality in processes and results, Smartmatic is organized around three business areas: Electronic voting systems, intelligent and integrated security systems for large enterprises and governments, and advanced solutions for people registration and authentication for a wide range of government applications.

Smartmatic is a privately held company with offices in the US, Mexico, Venezuela, Barbados, Spain, Philippines and Taiwan.  It has more than 200 employees worldwide.  Its capacity for innovation and wide range of products and services have earned Smartmatic extensive recognition in the technology community worldwide.

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