Foolproof system to compute election results, says Kelaniya University



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Computing and Technology Faculty, Dean, Dr. Gamini Wijeratne.


By Sajitha Prematunge


The new election results tabulation software is transparent, accurate and foolproof says Kelaniya University, Computing and Technology Faculty, Dean, Dr. Gamini Wijeratne. "The new system ensures the integrity of data as data entry can only be done at the district level. The system is not susceptible to hacking and is firewall and password protected."


Asked why the task of tabulating election results handled by the Colombo University for decades had been entrusted to the Kelaniya University, Dr Wijeratne said that may have been due to the additional data involved in this year’s election process.  He said upgrading an existing system with new software required complete restructuring and there were risks.


"It’s like trying to install GPS navigation in a Morris Minor. It would be easier to just buy a new car with inbuilt GPS navigation. Likewise, it would be easier to establish a brand new system," said Wijeratne. That was what Kelaniya University, Computing and Technology Faculty had at its disposal, he added. "All district offices can see what’s happening online."


He said the process ensured the accuracy of results as well as transparency, because results can only be entered at district level by ROs and AROs. "As there is no intermediary handling data, data can’t be manipulated not even by personnel of the Election Commission."


Wijeratne said even the Computing and Technology Faculty staff were not authorised to handle data entry. That measure had been adopted to ensure the integrity of data.


 Asked whether the system was susceptible to hacking, Wijeratne said that the network service provider Sri Lanka Telecom ensured internet security. "The programme itself is firewall and password protected. We also monitor system logs constantly." 


The new system also has in place a sub system to release results to media. The Kelaniya University, Computing and Technology Faculty has conducted special training sessions for ROs and AROs.


 


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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