The Supreme Court directive to grant NASA presidential candidate Raila Odinga access to IEBC servers will provide his legal team with an opportunity to audit the system.
According to an Information Technology (IT) expert, the order basically gives NASA and President Uhuru Kenyatta’s legal team unfettered access to the system save that they cannot alter or edit any information.
The Supreme Court allowed NASA a read-only access to select servers used by IEBC and make copies of Forms 34A and 34B.
“What this means is that the NASA team will not have administrative rights to alter any information but they can read and possibly copy any information they need without compromising the integrity of the system,” Lawrence Osoro, an IT expert said.
According to Osoro, the importance of the ‘access allow’ is that computer forensic expert or cyber security experts can use it to conduct a systems audit.
The forensic auditors are able to see who accessed the system, any input and output, who generated any information or deleted the same. This is the process used also to determine if the system was hacked and a stranger accessed it.
“Digital forensic experts can detect if the system was violated by a hacker and when it occurred. Although you may not identify the hacker, any expert will be able to tell if there was a hacking or an attempt on the same,” Osoro, an IT graduate from Multimedia University says.
He added; “Computer forensics analysts collect information from digital devices as part of legal investigations. They combine their computer science background with their forensic skills to recover information from computers and storage devices. This helps in retrieving evidence for purposes of a case.”
Both NASA and Jubilee will rely on persons with such skills who will be allowed to access the IEBC servers and retrieve any information required.
The court ordered today (Monday) that the litigants are given access to all servers, passwords, systems user types, IEBC redundancy plan and certified copies of the penetration tests conducted by the commission prior to, and during the August 8 elections.
The legal team will also be supplied, specific GPRS location of Kenya integrated election management systems (KIEMS), certified copies of all KIEMS kits, polling stations KIEMS kits allocation, technical agreements signed between the commission and service providers, logging in trail of KIEMS users and logging in trail of IEBC servers.
The highest court in the land also directed that original copies of forms 34A, 34B and 34C prepared at the polling station and transmitted to the national tallying centre and reading devices be submitted to distinguish the authenticity of the all documents be offered.
This will be issued to ascertain any credence to NASA’s claims that an Algorithm was used to manipulate the results and favour Uhuru.
“An Algorithm is a set of instructions designed to perform a specific task. In computer programming, algorithms are often created as functions; which serve as a small program that can be integrated to a larger system. In this case, NASA claims that an algorithm for converting the incoming results into a desired output was inserted into the KIEMS,” Osoro said.
Both NASA and President Uhuru’s teams are yet to unveil the names of individuals to represent them in the audit process after they were allowed two agents each.
The team that will include IEBC representatives will work under the supervision of the Registrar of the Supreme Court Esther Nyaiyaki and is expected to file its report by 5pm tomorrow (Tuesday).