27 APR 2022, Following the arrest of three (3) hackers claiming the capability to manipulate election results, Dobol B TV sa Radyo Singko 92.3 News FM with hosts Joel Reyes Zobel and Rowena Salvacion had an interview with the Executive Director of the Cybercrime Investigation and Coordinating Center (CICC) Undersecretary Cezar O. Mancao II to further understand and clarify the situation.
USEC. MANCAO: GAGAMITIN NG MGA NAARESTO ANG MGA DATA PARA MAKAPANDAYA AT MAKAPANLOKO NG ILANG KANDIDATO.
The hosts asked Usec. Mancao how far the hacking has reached. According to Usec. Mancao, the hackers were unable to reach very far into the systems but were able to get enough information to fool political aspirants. They used social media platforms such as Facebook and Discord to advertise and market their services on the Dark Web. As of now, connections to any political candidate or group are pure speculation.
USEC. MANCAO: MAHIRAP I-HACK AT BAGUHIN ANG MAGIGING RESULTA NG ELEKSYON DAHIL SA MGA NAKALATAG NA IBA’T IBANG SISTEMA.
Usec. Mancao reassured the hosts that the systems put in place to defend the integrity and validity of the elections are virtually impossible to hack as the election data will go through multiple personnel and both digital and physical security systems.
USEC. MANCAO: PINAPALABAS NG MGA SUSPEK NA KAYA NILANG MANIPULAHIN ANG ELEKSYON
To further clarify, Usec. Mancao added that though they are able to obtain data from the breach, the hackers would be unable to manipulate the election results, contrary to their claims of being able to do so. The hacker group merely beefed these claims up in order to fool and sell their services to potential clients.
USEC. MANCAO: LUMALABAS NA ISA SA MGA NAARESTONG SUSPEK ANG UTAK NG DATA BREACH SA SMARTMATIC
One of the arrested suspects had connections to an earlier incident, the data breach of Smartmatic. In a similar manner, these hackers in this incident were only able to obtain information from the flow of data and were unable to actually affect and manipulate the same.
USEC. MANCAO: PINAPANIWALA NG MGA SUSPEK NA KAYA NILANG IPANALO ANG ISANG KANDIDATO KAPALIT NG PERA
The cases being filed against the suspects include Illegal Access, System Interference, and Attempt to Commit a Cybercrime.