Environment Minister Martin Cullen has dismissed as ‘irresponsible and unfounded’ Labour Party criticism of the new electronic voting system.

The system is due to be implemented nationwide in next June's European and local elections.

The Labour Party insists it has identified a number of potential flaws and security worries within the system, and has demanded that the Government act to resolve the problems before extending electronic voting.

Electronic voting was used in three constituencies in last year's general election, and in seven in the second Nice Referendum.

Despite fears that it would prove difficult to use, particularly for older voters, a survey found that 96% of those who used the system were happy with it.

Next June, the system will be implemented nationwide in local and European elections, but today the Labour Party published a critical study of the system, carried out by two party members who work in the IT sector.

They claim the system has not been fully tested, may contain programming errors, and could be tampered with by someone trying to influence the result in favour of a particular person or party.

These claims are rejected by the Department of the Environment.