(Screengrab from Comelec virtual briefing)

MANILA – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Tuesday assured that the basic information of voter registrants using its newly launched Mobile Registration Form App is protected.

“So it is a stand alone, meaning you don’t need to have an internet connection to access the mobile registration form app. So in that case hacking incident is remote. Considering the application that we developed is not connected to the internet,” said Comelec Commissioner Marlon Casquejo in a press conference during the launch of the mobile app in Tagum City, Davao del Norte.

He added that the app can be initially accessed in 500 pilot areas all over the country.

“Starting now, it will be rolled out in 500 pilot areas including areas even not pilot areas just like Davao del Norte. As I have heard, those walk-in clients use the mobile registration app because, as what they have said, you don’t need to fill the forms in three copies using ballpens and then filling it up and taking them 10 to 15 minutes, but by using mobile app, it only takes them three minutes in filling up application form,” he said.

Casquejo added that only a mobile phone is needed to be able to download and fill up the registration form.

“It’s an additional tool in filing up registration forms using your mobile android phone. It doesn’t require data or an internet connection. Once download or copy the mobile app form to another mobile phone then you are ready to go. An encrypted QR code is generated, stored in your phone’s caller. Once you have the QR code the next step is to go to your election officer, present the QR code, then a printed application form will be generated and that’s it,” the Comelec official added.

The mobile registration app is available for download on Android devices using the link, bit.ly/MobileForm App.

Casquejo also reported that they have so far received over 11,000 applications and 16,000 app downloads.

He clarified that the mobile app is not meant to replace their iRehistro system.

“This app is not in any way replacing our existing iRehistro where the applicant can fill up their details, print the application form in three copies and choose a schedule to appear before an election officer. In fact, we encourage those with internet access at home or in the office to use our i-rehistro because it is convenient and easy to use,” he said.

He added that the mobile registration form app has been conceptualized to cater to applicants who have no access to internet or in areas wherein internet connection is poor.

Under the iRehistro project, which is available at http://www.comelec.gov.ph/, applicants can fill up the online application form. (PNA)