Monday, March 20, 2023

PLDT Pioneers First-Ever Hybrid National Poll Summit, Combining In-Person and Virtual Participation

PLDT provided connectivity support to the first National Election Summit organized by the Commission on Elections (COMELEC).

With PLDT powering the summit, participants across the Philippines and in other parts of the world were also able to join the three-day hybrid event online. 


“PLDT is committed to helping provide Filipinos with secure and fair elections. We support the COMELEC in coming up with recommendations, including the use of technology, to further strengthen the credibility of our polls,” said Mitch Locsin, FVP and Head of Enterprise and International Business Group at PLDT.

More than 400 participants attended the multi-stakeholder conference held at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila in Pasay City from March 8-10, 2023. With PLDT powering the summit, participants across the Philippines and in other parts of the world were also able to join the hybrid event online.

Other than COMELEC officers, the poll summit likewise drew in key government officials including President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. and Vice President Sara Z. Duterte, lawmakers, law enforcement agencies, civic society organizations, election watchdogs, professional groups, members of the academe, and student organizations.


COMELEC convened the multi-sector conference to craft recommendations that will address previous election issues. These will form part of the agency’s roadmap to further modernize the country’s election process. Among the proposals are the use of digital technology for voter registration, filing of certificates of candidacy, online voting, and other applications.


PLDT and Smart also hosted COMELEC at their Security Operations Center (SOC) in Makati early this year. During the round table discussion, PLDT Enterprise, the corporate business arm of the PLDT Group, talked about existing solutions that can be customized for the needs of COMELEC. The unit plans to collaborate with the agency on data storage and management while the poll body firms up plans for its own facility.


PLDT and Smart’s Cyber Security Operations Group (CSOG) also attended pre-Summit consultations to share its cybersecurity best practices that have allowed it to defend the telcos’ assets against threats and disruptive attacks.


At the summit’s conclusion, COMELEC presented PLDT Enterprise and Smart with Certificates of Participation for their valuable inputs that enriched discussions and dialogues during the three-day event.


PLDT and Smart’s initiatives to beef up government agencies’ digital infrastructure are part of a broader effort to elevate the Filipinos’ experience by keeping these critical organizations safe from cyber-attacks. These initiatives highlight the Group’s commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, particularly SDG No. 9 on Industries, Innovation, and Infrastructure.

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