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Application of Biometrics in Mobile Voting

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Voting process in today's era is behind its time in respect of the usage of modern ICT. The voting process is being seen mostly as a manual and paper based one. This process can be overwhelming, time-consuming and prone to security breaches and electoral fraud. Over the years technology related systems were being developed to resolve some of the issues like electoral fraud, impersonation, double voting etc. One such system is Electronic based voting that has been actively used for voting in countries like India. However, these systems seem to be prone to electoral frauds and voters have to make tremendous effort to cast their ballots. There are still a few very important areas which have to be identified and addressed viz., the Security which involves a person be able to vote in a secure manner, the time spent for voting by voters, the efficiency in counting of votes and the cost involved in employing people towards monitoring the voting process. So taking these areas/issues into consideration we have now come with the biometrics authenticated mobile voting system, to start with for a country like Jamaica. The technology being proposed now is novel and the first of its kind proposed at present. It is proposed that using fingerprint supported biometric control information and encryption along with Secure Socket Layer i.e. SSL using VeriSign, would make the software involved in the voting process well secured. In addition tying the credentials to a mobile device will make the system even more robust. We have considered the mobile equipment for the present system development, a smart phone using Android 3.0 (Honeycomb). The details of the proposed development are presented in this paper.
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I. J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
Published Online July 2012 in MECS (http://www.mecs-press.org/)
DOI: 10.5815/ijcnis.2012.07.07
Copyright © 2012 MECS I.J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
Application of Biometrics in Mobile Voting
Donovan Gentles1, Suresh Sankaranarayanan 2, 3
1Mona Institute of Applied Sciences, University of WestIndies, Jamaica
dongen02@gmail.com
2Computing & Information Systems, Institut Teknologi Brunei, Brunei
3Department of Computing, University of WestIndies, Jamaica
pessuresh@hotmail.com
Abstract Voting process in today’s era is behind its
time in respect of the usage of modern ICT. The voting
process is being seen mostly as a manual and paper based
one. This process can be overwhelming, time-consuming
and prone to security breaches and electoral fraud. Over
the years technology related systems were being
developed to resolve some of the issues like electoral
fraud, impersonation, double voting etc. One such system
is Electronic based voting that has been actively used for
voting in countries like India. However, these systems
seem to be prone to electoral frauds and voters have to
make tremendous effort to cast their ballots. There are
still a few very important areas which have to be
identified and addressed viz., the Security which
involves a person be able to vote in a secure manner, the
time spent for voting by voters, the efficiency in counting
of votes and the cost involved in employing people
towards monitoring the voting process. So taking these
areas/issues into consideration we have now come with
the biometrics authenticated mobile voting system, to
start with for a country like Jamaica. The technology
being proposed now is novel and the first of its kind
proposed at present. It is proposed that using fingerprint
supported biometric control information and encryption
along with Secure Socket Layer i.e. SSL using VeriSign,
would make the software involved in the voting process
well secured. In addition tying the credentials to a mobile
device will make the system even more robust. We have
considered the mobile equipment for the present system
development, a smart phone using Android 3.0
(Honeycomb). The details of the proposed development
are presented in this paper.
Index Terms Electronic voting, Mobile Voting, SSL,
Android 3.0
I. INTRODUCTION
The voting process in today’s context is behind its time
in respect of the usage of modern ICT as seen by
experience. The voting process begins with persons
manually going to an election office showing proof of
address and then a national identification card (Id) will be
issued for getting the authentication during the actual
process of voting at the polling both/station. With this, a
voters’ list will be generated for each constituency. Each
voter will then have to go to a polling station where they
believe that their names are made available and if so after
authentication with their Id, they will cast their vote by
placing a mark against the political party symbol of their
choice. In some cases, on the voter’s right thumb/index
finger, an indelible ink mark is made to show that this
person has already voted and so the voter cannot vote
again. After the voting schedule is complete, booth
officials will then take the ballot boxes to a centralized
place, then declare the voting results by manually
counting the votes polled, and tally the counts. In some
cases, there may be some need for a recount of ballot
papers polled also due to discrepancies. These processes
are often lengthy, tedious, inaccurate, and risky and in
some cases the final count may get skewed and end up in
court cases also. This manual process leaves scope for
errors to creep in, political dishonesty and political fraud,
which is seen through the voicing of their feelings by
people in the media in many countries using these
systems.
In countries that are better developed like in India,
electronic voting (e-voting) is made possible and this
technique encapsulates both electronic means of casting
of votes and also counting of votes [1]. This process
cleared up lots of problems and barriers faced by the
paper based voting process explained above. But
problems of long lingering lines of voters on the day of
voting to cast their votes still persist and consequently not
enough persons come for voting thereby neglecting their
civil rights. Another reason for the lack of participation is
that of security and the fear that they may be bullied into
voting for someone that they don’t wish to vote and cases
have been reported in the media regarding political riots
during the polling day. Another important reason is
impersonation, voting by somebody before the actual
person arrives in the polling booth for voting. These are
just a few reasons why persons may be reluctant to
exercise their rights to vote on the polling date.
With all these problems in mind, we here propose a
novel Mobile voting technique [2][3] for Jamaica at the
first instance, with the hope that this Biometric based
technology will erase the above issues. Our reported
research focuses on the application of mobile technology
with the use of biometrics encryption for authentication.
The paper is organized in sections as follows. Section 2
provides details on some of the Electoral Methodologies
currently in vogue. Section 3 gives details on Fingerprint
matching and Security authentication schemes. Section 4
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gives details on the Biometric based Mobile voting
technology being proposed. Section 5 gives the
implementation and validation details using Android
3.0.2 and Section 6 is conclusion and suggestion for
future work.
II. ELECTORAL METHODOLOGIES IN
VOGUE
A. Paper Based Process
The process, which is involved in the paper-based
electoral system in Jamaica, is a rigorous one [4]. First,
all persons who are eligible to vote (normally eighteen
years of age or older) should be a citizen of the country.
These persons will have to go and get enumerated six
months in advance after which the election workers will
visit their residential addresses to ensure first that those
persons actually live there and ascertain that they have
given the correct information about themselves. After
validation, a voter’s Id will be issued. The complete
procedure involves lot of paper work. Appropriate
training will have to be provided for the staff members in
charge of polling duty. During the day of polling, the
concerned staff members are required to be present half
hour prior to the opening of the polling booth/station to
check that all arrangements have been done correctly. On
the day of polling, the Officer in charge has to ensure that
a final checklist includes but not limited to:
Ensure that polling stations are in contact
Ensure that security forces are notified liaise with
head of their division.
Ensure that all Presiding Officers and Poll Clerks
are clearly identified for established polling stations.
After voting, the counting of ballots will be looked
after by another group of officers [4]. With all these
steps, groups and procedures that are involved, the
process can prove to be tedious, error prone and costly.
Some introduction of technology currently in the
Jamaican system, however, makes the process semi-
manual, but this is far from what could be really
accomplished by a fully ICT driven process. The semi-
manual process only allows the government to store
voters’ information on a database, which can be retrieved
on a computer on the election date to facilitate faster
searches.
B. Electronic Voting
Electronic voting (also known as e-voting)
encompasses both electronic means of casting votes and
counting of votes. It can include punched cards, optical
scan voting systems and specialized voting kiosk,
transmission of ballots via telephones, private computer
networks or the internet [1]. There are different types of
electronic voting systems with the advent of technology
to avoid electoral frauds like paper based electronic
voting, Direct Recording Electronic Voting, public
network Direct Recording Electronic Voting
C. Paper-based electronic voting system
This system is sometimes called a "document ballot
voting system" [1]. Paper-based voting systems
originated as a system wherein votes are cast and counted
by hand, using paper ballots. With the advent of
electronic tabulation systems, paper cards or sheets could
be marked by hand, but counted electronically.
D. Direct Recording Electronic Voting System (DRE)
A direct-recording electronic (DRE) [1] voting
machine records votes by means of a ballot display
provided with mechanical or electro-optical components
that can be activated by the voter - typically buttons or a
touch screen; that processes data with computer software;
and that records voting data and ballot images in memory
components. After the election, it produces a tabulation
of the voting data stored in a removable memory
component and as printed copy. The system may also
provide a means for transmitting individual ballots or
vote totals to a central location for consolidating and
reporting results from precincts at the central location.
E. Public network DRE voting system
A public network DRE voting system [1] is an election
system that uses electronic ballots and transmits vote data,
from the polling place to another location over a public
network. Vote data may be transmitted as individual
ballots as they are cast, or periodically as batches of
ballots throughout the Election Day, or as one batch at
the close of voting. This includes Internet voting as well
as telephone voting. Public network DRE voting system
can utilize either precinct count or central count method.
The central count method tabulates ballots from multiple
precincts at a central location.
Internet voting can use remote locations (voting from
any Internet capable computer) or can use traditional
polling locations with voting booths consisting of Internet
connected voting systems. Corporations and
organizations routinely use Internet voting to elect
officers and Board members and for other proxy elections.
Internet voting systems have been used privately in many
modern nations and publicly in the United States, the UK,
Switzerland and Estonia.
F. Smart Card in Voting
With the use of the smart cards and kiosk there was a
significant leap in voting technology, as persons were
able to vote within their own comfort zone or that was the
intension. The need for the various human security bodies
was eliminated. However, everyone who is eligible to
vote would have to have a pre-program smart card. The
voting Kiosk is where all the action is located. To start,
the voter must place the voter token into the slot. The
voting kiosk will seize this token until the voter has
successfully voted. After the token has been seized, the
kiosk will verify that this token is valid authentic, this is
done by looking at the RV signed token, timestamp and
the polling site id [5]. This system however, has flaws on
security aspect and voters could vote multiple times. In
Application of Biometrics in Mobile Voting 59
Copyright © 2012 MECS I.J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
addition, persons may have to stand in long queue to cast
their votes.
Taking the above aspects into consideration, we here
propose a Biometric authenticated Mobile voting system
[2][3] for Jamaica in the first instance, which would use
authentication using Fingerprint and voting using the
mobile device id i.e. IMEI number, as main security
mechanisms. Now before going into the details of this
proposed system, we would briefly review security
schemes that would be used for mobile voting.
III. FINGERPRINT MATCHING AND
SECURITY SCHEMES
Fingerprints are graphical flow-like ridges present on
human fingers [6][7]. Fingerprint identification is based
on two premises: (i) fingerprint details are permanent
based on the anatomy and morphogenesis of friction
ridge skin, and (ii) fingerprints of an individual are
unique. In order to perform matching, it is critical that an
understanding of the structure and features of the
fingerprint is obtained.
The lines that flow in various patterns across a
fingerprint are called ridges and the spaces between
ridges are called valleys. The more microscopic of
approaches is called minutia matching. The two types are,
ridge ending and bifurcation. An ending is a feature
where a ridge terminates and a bifurcation is a feature
where a ridge splits from a single path to two paths say a
Y-junction. Since fingerprints are permanent as discussed
above, if they were intercepted during communication or
retrieved from an endpoint because of poor security, a
perpetrator could effectively fake their identity,
pretending based on false biometrics. Therefore, good
security schemes are extremely important to protect this
biometric data. There are numerous cryptographic
schemes and algorithms available however, this research
is specifically interested in a certificate based
authentication and trust, HTTPS, and AES symmetric key
encryption, which are discussed below.
X.509 certificate is a signed record that associates
users’ identification with the cryptographic keys and the
framework postulates that everyone will obtain
certificates from an official certifying authority (CA)
usually a Trusted Third Party (TTP). One such company
is Verisign, which provides Secure Socket Layer (SSL)
Certificates and more in a single solution. They have
been providing the service since 1995. Over the years,
users of websites have grown to trust the websites that
bares the logo of a SSL Certificate Company. The public-
key certificate consists of a data part and a signature part.
The data part consists of the name of an entity, the public
keys corresponding to that entity, and additional relevant
information including the validity period for the public
key and so on. The signature part consists of the signature
of a TTP over the data part [8]. Hypertext transport
protocol secure (HTTPS) is a technology where Secure
Socket Layer (SSL) or Transport Layer Security (TLS) is
applied as a sub-layer over HTTP. HTTPS automatically
encrypts and decrypts data during communication
transfer. SSL is designed to make use of TCP to provide
a reliable end-to-end secure service [9].
The National Institute of Standards and Technology
(NIST) worked with the cryptographic community and
developed Advanced Encryption Standard (AES). The
overall goal was to develop a Federal Information
Processing Standard (FIPS) that specifies an encryption
algorithm capable of protecting sensitive (unclassified)
government information [10]. The Irondale proposal for
AES was accepted by NIST and defined a cipher in
which the block length and the key length can be
independently specified to 128, 192 or 256 bits. The AES
specification uses the same three key size alternatives but
limit the block length to 128 bits.
IV. BIOMETRIC BASED MOBILE VOTING
As stated by Mobile Marketers, voting by mobile could
become a reality by 2012, according to one of the leading
mobile messaging companies [11]. Very few researches
have been carried out on mobile voting. One such system
proposed [12] is where the voting machine works on an
embedded system with a touch pad and a memory unit
kept at the main office. In another development, a voter is
identified using a wireless certificate without additionally
registering [13] when a user votes using his mobile
terminal such as a cellular phone or a PDA.
It may be mentioned here that there has been no
published research material on Mobile Application based
Voting using biometrics and cryptography that enforce
security and confidentiality of voter, which cannot be
altered. So with this as background a Biometric
authenticated Mobile voting system [2][3] is being
proposed here that will be solely based on mobile
technology from the client side, powered by the use of
Android (3.0) and VeriSign for trusted SSL Certificate,
and integrated secure access level databases from the
server side. The secure use of biometrics encrypted
information and access control to secure database will
produce the resolution needed. This proposed system will
utilize a GSM mobile system, which consists of a GSM
SIM card. The Android operating system will be used in
conjunction with the mobile device. The mobile device
will be sensitive to capture biometrics information, for
example high tech camera and scanning capabilities to
capture ridges of the fingerprints. Each voter will be
assigned to a mobile device hence government would
have tied their biometrics information to the device at the
time of verification. To store and manage data in an
accurate and secure way, the government database will
use Microsoft Sql Server as the database. The database
architecture will be separated into two levels. There will
be two levels of Servers also.
Constituency level database (Level 1): This
database will be able to view data pertaining to voters
and politicians within the respective constituencies.
Each constituency will have the same database
architecture structure. The Constituency level database
will allow ballot casting and counting. This will make
the counting of ballots easier. Authentication and
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verification towards mobile device identity of the voter
will be done at the constituency level. Only voters
found in a particular constituency database will be
allowed to vote in that constituency. Constituency level
database can validate the address of the voter and
communicate to Main electoral database, which updates
it against the voter id. The same applies for Mobile
device identity too.
General or main level Database (Level 2): This
database in the Architecture is called the General (or
main) Database. This database is like a watchdog. It
monitors the validity of the information it captures like
the Fingerprint and Voter id. It also stores voters and
politicians’ information for all constituencies. It
communicates with all the constituency level databases
to ensure that person doesn’t vote in more than one
constituency. And it tallies all the votes by constituency.
Figure.1 Architecture of the proposed Mobile Voting System
The Architecture of the proposed system is shown in
Fig.1. The user will have to acquire the service of a smart
phone. For the purpose of this research, the smart phone
must be compatible with the Android 3.0 Operating
System. The mobile company will register the SIM and
phone identity to the individual. Users will register their
information at the central government database level.
This said level represents the Authentication Centre.
Users will be authenticated at the Authentication Centre.
Voters will go to their constituency office and get their
fingerprints scanned along with the verification of
residential addresses and other personal information. This
information will be authenticated at the Authentication
Centre. The internet along with the use of second
generation (2G), third generation (3G) and forth
generation (4G) mobile technology will be used for
networking in order to effectively make this system
successful. With that said it is of utmost importance that
the system should be highly secured. The biometric data,
cryptography and the use of a secure socket layer
technology will enforce the level of security needed. The
following steps outline the process of mobile voting
system which is been depicted as flowchart in Fig.2. The
details on implementation are discussed in the following
sections.
Voters and prospective voters will open the
application without the security and login
requirements.
If the user intends to register then they will be
connected to the server using TCP connection.
However the only thing they will be allowed to do at
this point is registration.
If the users have already registered and authenticated
by their finger-prints then they can login using their
respective finger-prints and voter’s id.
If the user wants to register then a screen to capture
personal information will appear. The form will ask
the user to enter name, date of birth, tax registration
number (TRN) for the case of Jamaica and address.
To capture the address Google maps is used in the
code available in order to facilitate faster and more
accurate searches.
A user also has the option to change his/her
information such as phone information (in the case of
a lost or stolen phone), and also address information.
To get access to this functionality, users will have to
supply finger-prints and voter’s ID.
The fingerprint information is encrypted and sent
to the government server along with the voter’s
ID. (The government server also has an
encryption algorithm which is identical to
encrypt finger-prints to make a match)
If the person chooses to register then information
is stored on the government databases and the
server but they are not allowed to vote or make
changes to any information given until all
information are verified and then authenticated
by submission of finger-print in person.
After the user has submitted the correct finger-
print from the correct phone and also provide the
correct voter’s ID then the server will
authenticate the voter. After which the voter is
now permitted to vote.
When the voter casts his/her vote then voter
status will be changed and also the party count
will increase as per the voter’s choice. The
voter’s identity however will not be tied to the
party which he/she voted for
This information is then stored on the
government server and databases.
V. IMPLEMENTATION USING ANDROID 3.0
The implementation of the above proposed Biometric
based Mobile voting system [2][3]was carried out using
Application of Biometrics in Mobile Voting 61
Copyright © 2012 MECS I.J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
Android 3.0 [19]. Details on the technologies used will be
discussed in brief before going into the implementation
details.
Android [14] is a mobile operating system for mobile
devices such as mobile telephones and tablet computers
developed by Google Inc and the Open Handset Alliance.
Android has seen a number of updates since its original
release. These updates to the base operating system
typically fix bugs and add new features. The version
history of the Android operating system began with the
release of version 1.0 in September 2008. Android 3.0 is
a new version of the Android platform that is specifically
optimized for devices with larger screen sizes,
particularly tablets. It introduces a brand new, truly
virtual and “holographic” UI design, as well as an elegant,
content-focused interaction model. With the Android
Honeycomb it offers all the tools developers need to
create incredible visible interaction experiences on the
devices, which includes but not limited to:
New UI framework for creating great tablet apps
High-performance 2D and 3D graphics
Enhancements for enterprise
Compatibility with existing apps
The choice of operating system was selected based
upon all these features, functionalities and capabilities of
the Android Honeycomb. The programming language of
choice is Java. The server and database was implemented
using Microsoft SQL Server 2008. Microsoft SQL Server
2008 was chosen because of its ease of use for
development and administration, its robust architecture
and high-end security feature and the online support from
the provider. GrFinger Fingerprint SDK Recognition
Library for Fingerprint Readers was the software used to
capture and process the fingerprints. This software was
used because it has various versions, which are
compatible with various environments, platforms and
programming languages. It has a version for the Java
programming language. This SDK is easy to use and does
not consume lots Random Access Memory (RAM)
Figure.2 Flowchart of Mobile Voting
Fig.3 shows the applications screen on the Android
Phone. It is displaying all the applications including the
voting application, which was created by us, and this is
shown with a circle over that. When the user clicks on
this icon, it will open this application. The Android
applications interface setting allows for ease of use and
easy access and manipulation of the icons. Also
deploying the application is very easy on the developer.
Fig.4 shows the initial screen when the voting application
starts up. It presents the user with four options such as
below:
Register This option is used when the user is first
registering through the application. It will take them to
a registration screen.
Vote This option is used for users to vote if they
have already registered and authenticated. This option
will take them to the voting module where they will be
required to supply their fingerprints and voter’s ID.
New Address This option is used in the event
persons need to change or modify their address
information. They will be taken to a screen which
allows them to update their address through the mobile
application
Lost Phone This option should be chosen only in the
event that the users may have lost their old phone.
They will be taken to a screen, which will allow them
to supply their fingerprints and voter’s ID.
In addition, the VeriSign Identity Protection logo is at
the bottom of the application to verify that the application
is valid and secure. Registration captures all the
information about the voter that is needed. Fig.5 shows
what will be the display when the user selects the option
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Copyright © 2012 MECS I.J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
to register. It captures all the information about the voter
that is needed. This includes names, addresses, date of
birth and tax registration numbers (TRN). For the address,
to make it easier to search and to utilize the 21st Century
technology when it comes on to locating address, an
address search map has been used. The button, which is
highlighted -“Find Address”, in Fig.5 when clicked will
initiate the address map. When the user selects the
“Search Address” button, they will be taken to a map of
the earth. This map is the Google map for android
applications. They are able to navigate, zoom in and
zoom out as it is on a regular Google maps search. The
user zooms in on the map of Jamaica. User has the ability
to move to all locations on the earth that Google Maps
have covered and also to zoom in and zoom out.
Fig.6 shows the user selecting the address. This
address in our simulation example is Shadbark Road,
Kingston. When user selects the “OK” button, they are
taken back to registration screen. All the information has
been filled and the information is now ready to store.
User now has to select the “OK” button to connect to the
government database where the information will be
stored as shown in Fig.7. If the user decides however, to
decline from registering, then they can select the
“Cancel” button and then they would be taken back to the
initial display screen. After the user clicks the “OK”
button confirming his registration information, they will
be taken to the screen shown in Fig.8. This is the
confirmation and ticket notification screen. The
information on this screen is taken from the database.
After the user registers and the request and information
reaches the government database, a ticket is created for
that person. The ticket at this moment is open; this means
that the registration process is still not completed. The
user will be required to know his/her ticket number. On
visiting the electoral office, they will be asked for their
ticket number. They will be asked to give their
fingerprint and upon extraction of the fingerprint, then
the ticket will be closed. At this point, the registration
process gets completed.
Figure.3 Mobile Voting Icon Android Application
Figure.4 Initial Start-up Screen (Application)
Figure.5 Registration Screen and Address Search
Figure. 6 Selecting Address
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Copyright © 2012 MECS I.J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
Potential voters will produce their TRN and the user of
the system will then enter their TRN and click the search
button. If the user has registered then all the registration
information will be displayed on the form. There is a
section on the form to display the fingerprint of the voter.
In this case, the voter has not yet been authenticated;
hence, there is no record of voter’s fingerprint. The
“Image” button on the menu bar is used to search for the
fingerprint after it has been captured by a fingerprint
scanner. The enroll button has been gray out at this time
as it is only enabled when a fingerprint is supplied. If
voters does not get their fingerprint scanned then they
will not be authenticated, therefore they will not be able
to vote using the “Biometric Mobile Voting” application.
Fig.9 shows the “Electoral Office Voters’
Authentication” screen when the user’s fingerprint has
been supplied. A physical picture of the fingerprint
showing the ridges has been displayed. The enroll button
is now enabled to allow the user to update the database
with the new voter’s fingerprint. After the voter’s
fingerprint is enrolled then the voter is fully eligible to
vote. The voter however, has to vote using the phone that
was used to do the registration. Voter’s fingerprints are
linked with the user’s TRN in the appropriate database.
At this point all fingerprints stored in the main database
have been encrypted. Reason for this is to conceal
persons’ biometrics identity. Even if intruders should get
access to the database then they will have to get access to
the key and the decryption algorithm in order to get the
biometric identity. However, after the fingerprint has
been enrolled, the address status in the database gets
changed for verification. This is important as when a user
wishes to change or modify his/her address, then the
status will be set back to “Not Verified” condition, until
they come into the electoral office again towards
verifying the information. This is part of the security
strength mechanism. The operations control of the system
is done both in the backend and the front-end (application
side) of the system. This is to prevent false voting and
forgery, and preventing users from voting more than once
which is shown in Fig. 10. Fig.11 shows the condition
that the voter decides to vote. In this case, the user will be
required first to produce his fingerprint and voter’s ID.
After supplying, the fingerprint and voter’s ID then voter
will click the login button. On clicking the login button,
the fingerprint is instantly encrypted. The encrypted
fingerprint and the voter’s ID are sent to the
government’s database where it is authenticated and
validated. If the information, which the voter supplied, is
validated correctly with the matching mobile phone
identity then they will get the go ahead to proceed to vote.
Fig.12 shows the voter after supplying his information
and verified is then taken to this screen and the selection
of political party will appear in the form of radio buttons.
User will select the party of choice then click the “OK”
button. Upon clicking the “OKbutton, the choice of
selection will be sent to the government along with the
voter’s ID for processing. The voter’s ID is sent to the
database along with the updated count of the party, which
was the choice of voting as shown in Fig.13. In this way,
the voting status of the voter is captured but the identity
of the voter is concealed as it relates to the party, which
he voted for. This mechanism enforces security so no
history of the party has been linked to a particular voter. .
.
Figure.7 Registration Completed
Figure.8 Registration Confirmation
Figure.9 Fingerprint Capturing- Electoral office
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Copyright © 2012 MECS I.J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
Figure.10 Voter Address- Verified
Figure.11 Biometric Mobile Voting
A. Address Change
If a person decides to change their address information
then they will be brought to the screen shown in Fig.14.
The “New Address” option when selected will bring the
user to this screen. The potential voter will be required to
give their fingerprint and voter’s ID. The fingerprint is
encrypted the same time in the application before been
sent over the network to the backend to be processed. The
“Address Locator” button will take you to the Google
Maps screen so user can choose the new address. This
address will however be put on hold until it is been
verified. This verification can be done at government
electoral office outlets and at the local constituency
offices. A web application is available to make the
information given is authentic. But before that, the user
address information in the database is set back to “Not
Verified”. Fig.15 shows a confirmation message after
address information has been submitted. The server
received the information and notify the voter that their
information is been received Fig.16 shows the website
which can only be accessed by the electoral office
network.
Figure.12 Confirmation of Voting
Figure.13 Voting count
This web application is used to validate voter’s new
address information. The voter will supply their voter’s
ID and the officer will input the “Voter’s ID” in the text
box and then click “Find Voter” button. On clicking the
“Find Voter” button the application will do a search for
the voter’s address. If search is successful then the form
will be filled out. At this point the officer can now click
the verify button. This will instantaneously update the
database as shown in Figure.17 where new Address
Princess Alice Drive is been validated and confirmation
sent that the address is now validated. A notification
message, at the bottom of the web page, shows that the
Application of Biometrics in Mobile Voting 65
Copyright © 2012 MECS I.J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
address information is now validated. This process is
done in the form of web application for easy access and
ease of work load on the electoral office staff. It also
makes it much easier on the voters to go into their nearest
(local) constituency office to get the address information
validated.
Figure.14 Address Change
Figure.15 Confirmation of Address Changed
Figure.16 Validate Voter’s New Address
Figure.17 Voter’s New Address- Verified.
B. Lost Phone
When a voter loses his/her phone, they will select the
lost phone option from Fig.4 which will take them to the
screen displayed in Fig.18. They will be required to
supply their fingerprint and voter’s ID. After supplying
the information needed then they will select the submit
button. They will not have to submit information about
their old nor new phone, as the database have already tied
their fingerprint and voter’s ID to the mobile phone
identity number. Also the application will be able to
capture the new phone’s information to store in the
66 Application of Biometrics in Mobile Voting
Copyright © 2012 MECS I.J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
database. Fig.16 shows that the server has received the
lost phone notification from the user and responds with a
notification message which is displayed on the screen.
The voter’s new phone is now updated in the database
which replaces the old (lost) phone information.
C. Double Voting
Let us consider a scenario as shown in Fig.20 where a
user is trying to breach the security operation of the
system. Someone who has voted already is trying to cast
another vote. The person has to log in his fingerprint
again and also his voter’s ID. On receiving this
information the server instantly recognizes that the status
of the person making the request is already voted. On
receiving this request the server raises a red flag and send
a notification/warning back to the voter telling that his
request is been denied. A message is displayed on the
screen to notify the user. A history of the attempts made
on a particular device with a particular voter’s ID is been
kept. The timestamp, number of attempts and status is
also captured. This information is been kept in order for a
security mechanism and in order to help in any
investigation anytime in the future. Fig. 21 shows
database that the same user is trying to cast a second vote,
however vote is not been accepted and the attempt count
increases to 2. Remember a potential voter tries to vote
from a phone that he is not tied to in the database. In
other words he didn’t register to vote from this phone that
he will try to vote from and application will not allow the
voter to do so.
Figure.18 Lost phone
Figure.19 Confirmation of Phone Change
Figure. 20 Double Voting
Application of Biometrics in Mobile Voting 67
Copyright © 2012 MECS I.J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
Figure. 21 Database of Voting Attempts
D. Voting from a Wrong Device
In Fig.22 a legal voter with authenticated fingerprint
and voter’s ID is trying to vote from a mobile device not
registered to this voter. In a case like this, as part of the
robust security mechanism there will be a bar to a request
of this nature. This is to prevent valid voters to try to vote
from multiple devices hence increasing the possibility of
one person voting multiple times. A message is displayed
to the user warning that he is voting from the wrong
device and also the attempt count. Voter made a second
attempt to vote from the same device. Again another
warning message is displayed telling the potential voter
that he is trying to vote from the wrong device and also
the attempt count has increased to 2. If a user has already
made 2 attempts to vote and both attempts failed then he
only has one last attempt which he/she has to get correct
otherwise the voter will be barred from voting. Voter
tries to vote for the third time on the wrong device and
now its strike three i.e. the user account. The voter’s ID
and fingerprint is officially barred until checks are made
in person that rectifies the situation.
Figure.22 Voting From Wrong Device- Three Attempts
Figure.23 User barred from Voting- Database
VI CONCLUSION & FUTURE WORK
The manual voting process can be very tedious, prone
to electoral fraud and costly. The time that is been
consumed and the resources often times runs into
expensive projects. With all this, security is compromised
because of the inability of all the human factors to
provide efficient security needed for robust operation of
the system. The full potential of getting the citizen to
express their democratic rights is not being realized
because persons find it tiresome and time consuming,
first to enumerate (register for voting) and then to stand
in long lines to vote on election. In some areas persons
are fearful of their lives and forced influence voting. The
counting of ballots can also be rigged and very much
time consuming and often times results are not tallied
quickly enough. Tallied results seem uncertain and the
credibility of the calculation is often times questioned.
Semi-technological systems had solved some of these
issues but create access to more problems such as persons
breaking through the system to vote multiple times
because of lack of strong security. The proposed system
addressed these challenges which brings the application
of Biometric i.e. Fingerprint towards voting from the
mobile device where people can vote to any party of their
choice from anywhere and also Registration can be done
over the internet from mobile device itself except for
registering the fingerprint where you have to visit the
electoral office.
In future the software would have the capability to
check if the fingerprint scanned is proper towards
encryption particularly if the scanner being used is of
cheap quality. Also the false positives/false negative of
encrypted fingerprint be checked by the software
towards real time voting process too in future to make
sure only authorized person is given permission and not
illegal person to vote though mobile identity be used as
extra security measure too.. Also the database can be
decentralized with more layers which will ease the load
68 Application of Biometrics in Mobile Voting
Copyright © 2012 MECS I.J. Computer Network and Information Security, 2012, 7, 57-68
on database server and also security features at database
level should be strengthened too towards accessibility of
Government database. Finally Registration including
fingerprint and Address verification also should be
automated over internet instead of going to electoral
office. Last but not the least creating an application in an
environment that is platform independent and hence it
can be run on various types of mobile equipment
embedded with finger print scanner or and getting finger
print scanner attached to mobile handset via USB. By
doing this it will eliminate the effort of everyone trying to
get specific mobile equipment that may be too expensive
for them to afford. Lastly the people would get their
fingerprint registered in database every five years taking
into consideration the age, wrinkles appearing in finger
print, blood circulation and so.
REFERENCES
[1]. Electronic Voting (2009), Available from
http://www. hwskioskprinter.com/terminology
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[2]. Gentles, D and Suresh, S (2011). “Biometric
Secured Mobile Voting”, Proceedings of Second
IEEE/IFIP Asian Himalayas International
Conference on Internet, Kathmandu, Nepal.
[3]. Gentles, D (2011). Application of Biometrics for
Mobile Voting”, M.Sc Computer Science
Dissertation, Department of Computing, University
of West Indies, Jamaica
[4]. Electoral office of Jamaica (2007), Available from
www.jis.gov.jm/special_sections/election_2007/in
dex.html
[5]. Deville, D et al(2003), “Smart Card Operating
system: Past, Present and Future” .Proceedings of
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[6]. Pfitzmann, B and Ahmad-reza S (1996).
Anonymous fingerprinting. Berlin: Springer-Verlag,
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[7]. Jain, A et al (1997) "On-Line Fingerprint
Verification." IEEE Transactions on Pattern
Analysis and Machine Intelligence VOL. 19, No. 4,
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[8]. Menezes, A et al(1996). Handbook of Applied
Cryptography. CRC Press, 1996
[9]. William, S (2005). Cryptography and Network
Security Principles and Practices, Fourth Edition.
Prentice Hall, 2005
[10]. Nechvatal et al. Report on the Development of the
Advanced Encryption Standard (AES). National
Institute of Standards and Technology, 2000.
[11]. Mobile Marketer (2009), “Mobile Voting Could
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[12]. Wireless Mobile Voting (2000), Available from
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Kerela-invents-30938.asp
[13]. Kim, K and Hong, D (2007), “Electronic Voting
System using Mobile Terminal. World Academy of
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[14]. Speckmann, B (2008). The Android mobile
platform. Michigan: Eastern Michigan University,
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Donovan Gentles is a Msc. Computer Science student in
the Department of Computing at the University of the
West Indies, Jamaica which he is pursuing since 2009.
Prior to that, he obtained Bachelor’s degree in Computing
& Information Technology from University of
Technology Jamaica in 2006.
He is currently working as Programmer/Analyst in
Gleaner Company Ltd in Jamaica since 2009. Prior to
that he worked as Programmer/Project Leader during
2008-2009 in Fujitsu and state of Conencticut Judicial
branch, USA. Also during 2007-2008 he worked as
Programmer/Analyst in MiPhone and Fiscal Services,
Jamaica.
He is well versed in C/C++, Java, ASP.NET,
JavaScript and Database management system using
Oracle, DB2, MySQl and MSSQL.
In his Master’s Programme he did Master’s thesis on
“Application of Biometrics in Mobile Voting which
focused on using biometrics for mobile voting that has
been published in IEEE Conference proceedings . His
research interest includes Intelligent Agents, Mobile
commerce, Biometrics.
Prof. Suresh Sankaranarayanan holds a PhD degree
(2006) in Electrical Engineering with specialization in
Networking from the University of South Australia. He is
a Senior Member of IEEE computer Society and
Computer Society of India too. He was working as a
Lecturer (Asst. Prof. Status) in the Department of
Computing and lead the Intelligent Networking Research
Group, in the University of West Indies, Kingston,
Jamaica, during 2008-11.He has also worked as a
Professor, School of Computer Science and Engineering,
Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT University),
Chennai Campus, India, for a short period during 2011.
He is now working as Associate Professor, Department of
Computer & Information Systems, Institute of
Technology, Brunei (ITB A technological university).
Currently he is also functioning as a Visiting Professor,
Department of computing, Faculty of Pure & applied
Science, University of West Indies, Mona Campus,
Kingston-7, Jamaica, West Indies. He has got to his
credit, about 50 fully refereed research papers published
in the Proceedings of major IEEE international
conferences, as Book Chapters and in International
Journals. He is also a Reviewer and Technical Committee
member for a number of IEEE Conferences and Journals.
His current research interests are mainly towards Mobile
and Ubiquitous Computing- Wireless Sensor Networks in
Health & Engineering, Intelligent Agents, Cloud
Computing, Mobile commerce.
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Mobile Voting Could become Reality by 2012: VeriSign Available from http://www.mobile marketer.com/cms/news/messaging/2980 Available from http://www.andhranews.net/India
  • Mobile Marketer
Mobile Marketer (2009), " Mobile Voting Could become Reality by 2012: VeriSign ", Available from http://www.mobile marketer.com/cms/news/messaging/2980.html [12]. Wireless Mobile Voting (2000), Available from http://www.andhranews.net/India/2008/January/25- Kerela-invents-30938.asp [13]. Kim, K and Hong, D (2007), " Electronic Voting System using Mobile Terminal. World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology, Vol.3(2), pp.33-37.
Biometric Secured Mobile Voting
  • Gentles
  • S Suresh
Gentles, D and Suresh, S (2011). "Biometric Secured Mobile Voting", Proceedings of Second IEEE/IFIP Asian Himalayas International Conference on Internet, Kathmandu, Nepal.