Electoral commissions have the delicate task of maintaining reliable and correct electoral registers as part of the execution of the election. To help ensure secure and accurate voter verification before issuing ballot slips, the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) has appointed Gemalto, a Thales company, and Nextix as technology partners to develop, deploy and support the Biometric Voter Verification System for the 2019 Philippines National and Local Election. The aim is to automate the verification of voters through the use of their biometrics information.
Addressing this need, Gemalto will provide over 30,000 biometric tablets to enable rapid identification and authentication of voters in the designated precincts across the Philippines. With the tablets that feature Gemalto’s Voter Verification System, authorities will be able to reduce fraud by verifying voters’ identity via their fingerprints. This will also help cut waiting times for the voters and authorities tremendously.
COMELEC will use the Gemalto solution to verify the identity of voters. This was put to a test at the first time during the mock elections held on 19th Jan 2019, in preparation for the actual polls in May 2019. Instead of manually checking the COMELEC’s voters list, members of the Board of Election Inspectors used the Voter Registration Verification Tablet, a system that removes the need for voters to present their identification card. Thanks to the tablet the electoral board will identify the voter’s with his fingerprint to determine if the voter is registered and whether the individual belongs to the certain precinct. If the individual is a registered voter, the tablet will validate the registration and a he will receive the necessary ballot.
Fingerprints serve as a key to avoid duplication. The aim is to ensure that citizens are not able to use several identities to vote multiple times. The Voter Verification System implements a quality control to verify that the data has been captured and verified correctly. Authorities are also able to track voting activity and participation rate via logs and audit reports. These steps will ensure the best possible level of security for elections to take place.
“Secure, reliable and comprehensive enrollment and ID verification are the foundations of citizen registration, voting processes and border controls,” said Dir. James Jimenez. “With Gemalto’s Voter Verification System, we are able to streamline not only the verification but moving ahead, our registration processes bring greater convenience to citizens, guaranteeing the quality and confidentiality of data captured. We are excited to deploy this solution – a first for the Philippines government.”
“In today’s environment, authorities face numerous challenges. Biometrics serve as the primary data that establishes an individual’s identity is accurately collected and verified. We are proud that the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) chose Gemalto biometric solution to verify the identity of voters. It is an honor to help COMELEC transform the agility and efficiency of the voters’ verification and registration processes,” said Tan Teck Lee, Asia President, Identity & Biometric Solutions, Thales.