The review of the “source code” that will be used for the precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines began at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in Manila on Thursday. The source code refers to the readable computer program that will be used on the 82,000 PCOS machines for scanning ballots on Election Day. Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. said the review would ensure the credibility of next Monday’s midterm elections. But senatorial candidate Richard Gordon, who has asked the Supreme Court to stop the elections on a question of the “honesty” of the source code, said that with only four days before the balloting, political parties do not have enough time to examine the source code.
Brillantes said representatives of the political parties and a citizens’ watchdog conducted the review after a representative of Dominion Voting Systems formally turned over the source code to the Comelec.
But the critics were not impressed. Former Comelec Commissioner Gus Lagman said the Comelec should show if the binary code to be used on the PCOS machines actually “came from the source code reviewed by SLI.”
“That’s what I want to find out. How do they ensure that that binary code was not tampered with along the way? Was a ‘hash’ code generated for distribution to all [Boards of Election Inspectors] so the binary codes can be checked?” Lagman said. He dismissed Brillantes’ claim that the turnover of the source code resolves the question of credibility of the elections. “He must be kidding. It’s not the turnover that’s important; it’s the review that is,” Lagman said.
“It’s deceptive,” Gordon told the Inquirer, referring to the Comelec presentation before journalists Thursday morning.
Gordon, a former senator who is running again for the Senate as a candidate of the opposition United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), said there was no more time to check if the source code would match each of the 82,000 PCOS machines to be used next Monday. “It’s not a valid inspection,” Gordon said. “Mere showing of the source code doesn’t mean that it already complied with the law.”
Full Article: Comelec starts review of PCOS source code | Inquirer News.