^

Cebu News

Comelec: Hacking PCOS machine unlikely

- Marjun A. Baguio -

CEBU, Philippines - Although it is not impossible to hack the Precinct Count Optical Scanner machines that will be used in the May 2010 elections, the chance of hacking them is “very rare” a hacker would consider it a waste of time, said a Commission on Elections official.

Lawyer Marchel Sarno, Mandaue City election officer, said this following apprehensions that the automated polls will be open to electronic fraud.

Sarno, however, assured that the PCOS machines that will be used in the country’s first automated polls operate independently of each other and utilize a 128-bit encryption which is also the same security strength used in banks worldwide.

A 128-bit encryption is being utilized by banks across the country. For a hacker to access data he must have the encryption key composed of over a trillion separate digits

Computer experts said that the chance of guessing all the digits correctly is far too difficult, if not impossible.

Public speculations of cheating in the May 2010 automated elections arose after reports that “some people may mess up and challenge the credibility of the Automated Election System”.

Sarno said that hackers will find it really hard to access the machines since there is no master code and that each machine is a standalone with no connection to any sort of network until after the voting process. Thus, hackers will have very little time to access any given machine.

“There is a very limited window of hacking opportunity,” he said.

The PCOS machines are not connected to the Internet or to any mobile network until after the voting, counting and printing of election returns.

It was learned that after the copies are printed, the Board of Election Inspectors connects the modem to the machines and transmits the data; giving hackers a difficult time get in because there is no connectivity.

After the machines are connected to the modem, voting results are sent to the six servers namely; the city or municipal Board of Canvassers, central Comelec server, the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas, the dominant majority party, dominant minority party and the citizen’s arm.

Sarno emphasized, that “in this crucial moment”, hackers will only have two to seven minutes to do the hacking.

But he said that vigilantism and scrutiny of the public in the coming May 2010 automated polls will ensure a safe, honest, and credible election.(FREEMAN NEWS)

vuukle comment

AUTOMATED ELECTION SYSTEM

BOARD OF CANVASSERS

BOARD OF ELECTION INSPECTORS

BRODKASTER

COMELEC

KAPISANAN

LAWYER MARCHEL SARNO

MACHINES

MANDAUE CITY

PRECINCT COUNT OPTICAL SCANNER

SARNO

  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Latest
abtest
Recommended
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with