Cyberattacks and information influence operations are a threat to electoral integrity: EC Anup Chandra Pandey

NEW DELHI : Election Commissioner Anup Chandra Pandey on Tuesday said that the cyber-attacks and information influence operations are posing an increasing threat to election infrastructure and perceptions of electoral integrity. 

The EC added that the Election Management Bodies (EMBs) are required to navigate between the greater and easier citizen participation that accrues due to greater use of technology in elections and the integrity threat trying to erode public trust.

The EC made these remarks at an international conference organised by the Election Commission in New Delhi on the “Use of Technology and Elections Integrity».

Pandey highlighted the positive role played by the technology in the election process. “With the introduction of technology, complex electoral management processes can be made simpler and easier to organize. Advances in technology can thus speed processes up and reduce the workload involved in election management. In many countries today, technology is seen by the electoral management body (EMB) also as a means of minimizing the potential for errors, and not just a tool for problem solving», the EC said.

He emphasized that technology had opened a new front in the battle to protect and support democratic institutions and the electoral process.

Pandey said that electorate confidence and stakeholder trust is necessary for technology absorption in the electoral processes. 

The EC underscored the need for EMB to come together through sharing of knowledge, experience and technology transfer to fulfil unfinished tasks. “We need to address the challenges through knowledge sharing on a regular basis in a structured manner,» Pandey added.

The two-day conference is the second in a series of three conferences to be organised by the Election Commission. It is being hosted under the Cohort on Election Integrity led by the commission.

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