BIOMETRIC AUTHENTICATION OF VOTERS AND VOTING PROCESS A STUDY OF SENATORIAL ELECTION. A RESEARCH PROJECT MATERIAL ON COMPUTER SCIENCE EDUCATION
The elections that are made by using traditional methods are no longer preferred because of the long period of preparation, fake voting, faulty voting, mistakes made in counting the votes, long period of counting and high cost of voting process. In order to avoid these disadvantages affecting directly the economy and policy of the country, it is obligatory to carry the available voting system to an electronic system. Reacting to allegations of widespread voter impersonation (or “election rigging”, as commonly referred to in Nigeria) the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) attempted to conduct audits in several constituencies to determine the extent of multiple voting and voter impersonation. This should have been possible by comparing the fingerprints in the voters’ rolls with the fingerprints captured by polling officials. The audit results were inconclusive – while there was some evidence of multiple voting, the matter remained largely unresolved. The main obstacle for an effective audit was the poor quality of voter verification carried out by polling officials and the poor quality of ink for fingerprints.
Previously, voting for general and local elections is done by electors with voting papers and voting boxes in which the voting papers are placed. This method reveals some kinds of negative situations. Not been able to determine which party the stamp belongs to, the probability of placing the voting papers in wrong box, problems with counting the votes, loss of time when there happens to be some objections, paper printing and expenditures done for personel are some of the disadvatages of classical election system. The secret ballot is a fundamental instrument for protecting the freedom of choice of voters. For this reason, it is necessary to use new technologies for making the election system more trustable, economic and faster.
Electronic election system is set into use in some countries, especially in USA and Europe, at the beginning of nineties as a result of innovating technology and it became more trustable by improving itself at the present day. Electronic voting is an activity of realising the voting in electronic environment. Electronic election is a system which enables fast counting by electronic voting.
Electronic voting is used in some countries in the world and there are also studies about it (Babu and Padmavathamma, 2006; El-qawasmeh and Owais, 2010;
Folorunso et al., 2005; Hajjar et al., 2006). Electronic voting is used for parliamentary elections in Australia in 2001 (Schoen and Faas, 2005), for student union elections in Austria in 2003 (Prosser et al., 2003), for municipal elections in Canada in 2003 (Nakhaie, 2006), for both general and local elections in India in 2003 (Gorla, 2009). As a result of developments on information technologies in recent years, public opinion polls and nation-wide general elections will be realized faster and more effectively on electronic environment.
Nowadays, security problems are experienced with the fast developing technology. Besides developing the system, there are also so many studies and new methods for solving the security problems of the developing system. As a result of developing technology, individual password is started to be used to meet the security requirements. In time, new methods are developed and card technologies are used due to closing the security holes about burglary of the cards or forgetting the individual passwords. Usage of the ID cards and Private Identification Numbers (PIN) become widespread at card technologies (Sonkamble et al., 2010; Alkan and Bulut, 2010). Researches on security and identification operations according to physical characteristics are realized due to limitations of this technology in time.
Biometric systems are the methods which make identification of people according to their physical characteristics. Biometric methods consist of fingerprint, face, hand shape, retina, iris, and voice track methods (Sonkamble et al., 2010; Kadry and Smaili, 2010; Razzak et al., 2010). These methods may be used alone or together in the developed systems.