Coronavirus | New software to allow minor data correction in CoWin platform

The government-controlled CoWin digitalised platform to register for COVID-19 vaccination is all set to “introduce a new functionality of allowing correction of information to be uploaded onto the final vaccination certificates,” confirmed R.S. Sharma, Chairman, Empowered Group on COVID vaccination, while speaking exclusively to The Hindu.

The move comes following complaints of data entry errors. “We are deploying a patch — piece of software — that will allow corrections and issue certificate based on this. The provision is totally new and the final certificate is digitally verifiable from anywhere in the world,” said Dr. Sharma.

Stating that the software would be in place within the next couple of days, Dr. Sharma said this technology would allow minor changes in the spelling of a name or mistakes in the surname etc.

Security protocols

“We will have a protocol in place to guide users on how to do it [correct the minor error]. It will be done in a manner where one cannot misuse the system to change the name first entered completely to an entirely new different name and thus wrongly issue a new certificate. We need to initiate all necessary security protocols before we roll out this patch,” he added.

Dr. Sharma noted that purely from a software standpoint, the platform is currently not facing any challenges.

“The software is simple to use, inclusive, highly scalable and can cater to a large number of people. The problems occur at data entry level. Though the data sought are minimal — name, age and gender — mistakes occur. While minor errors can be rectified at the time of vaccination where the verifier checks these details, however, there are still some cases — fairly rare ones and errors remain. In such cases, those who need the certificates for travel or other purposes, want these errors to be corrected and that is where the system comes in handy,” he explained.

Dr. Sharma added that at present the system of vaccination event is recorded as Immutable Vaccination Event Record (IVER) which could not be altered.

“If we allow it to be changed, then all kinds of problems could occur. People can misuse it to get the certificate by changing the names of the person etc. Hence, we did not have any provision for change in the IVER. The change we are putting in place, through deploying a patch, allows correction of spelling errors in a name or gender [if wrongly entered],” he added.

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Printable version | May 15, 2021 11:07:54 AM |

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