[LINK] Labor backs open source software for e-government projects
Fri, 08 Nov 2002 09:12:44 +1100
Labor backs open source software for e-government projects
November 7 2002
Open source software can provide greater security and innovation in the
delivery of e-Government services, and should be investigated immediately
by Government agencies and departments, the Shadow Minister for Information
Technology, Senator Kate Lundy said today.
Senator Lundy told the "e-Government Australia Summit" that information and
communications technology (ICT) systems built with open source software was
more likely to serve the needs of Government customers in the fast changing
She said departments and agencies should be asked to assess the merits of
open source software as part of their strategic approach to sourcing.
"Labor has always challenged the wisdom of long-term contracts capturing
government departments and agencies in shrink-wrapped proprietary software
solutions at a time when technology is changing so rapidly. Open source
also has strengths in crucial areas such as security," Senator Lundy said.
She pointed to the fact that open source software is backed by a system of
peer review - if security flaws were found, anyone can have access to the
source code to fix the flaws.
She warned the government against considering open source software merely
as another means of cost-cutting. "Instead, I see open source software as
offering huge potential in rethinking the management of public information
and the delivery of e-Government services by using smart and secure
technology that will serve now and into the future," she said.
"This is the chance to make a significant investment in updating legacy
technology systems that will prevent the effective delivery of e-government
services, including access to data that is held in systems that are up to
30 years old.
"As far as e-Government is concerned, what is required is a vision for
Australia that understands that software and the Internet are central to
delivering citizen focused e-government services," Senator Lundy said
The days of the digital watch are numbered.
-- Tom Stoppard