A digital ID app secured by biometrics has once again been used in elections in Oman.
Developed by TECH5 and Dubai-based Uqudo, the “Antakhib” app verifies end users by asking them to scan their biometric ID cards using their phone’s NFC reader, and to then allow the app to scan their face in order to match it to the physical ID. The process can be completed in less than a minute, and reliably verifies that the end user is indeed the voter they claim to be.
The system was used to enable remote voting for municipal elections near the start of this year, and has now been used for the first time in elections for the Shura Council, one of the country’s major legislative bodies. Over 750,000 voters were verified using the app in the Shura Council elections, with those outside of the country being allowed to vote on October 22, and those within having the option to verify themselves with the app on October 29.
“Oman’s digital elections are a historic moment for the country, and with uqudo and TECH5’s collaborative efforts, we are confident that the entire electoral process is fair and accurate, in line with Oman’s vision of enhanced digital acceleration,” said Uqudo CEO and founder Mohamed Fagiri.
Beyond helping to ensure that the elections were free of fraud, the digital ID solution also reduced costs. According to the companies, the organization of the entire voting process was reduced from a period of three or four months to less than a week, and giving Omanis the option to vote remotely reduced the need for staffing at physical polling stations.
Commenting on the latest success, TECH5 CTO and Chairman Rahul Parthe hinted that the mobile voter ID solution will come to other countries in the future. “We will continue developing the offerings to ensure that every country has access to innovations powering fair and convenient elections for everyone,” he said.
The news comes shortly after TECH5’s announcement that it had been certified as an Identity Service Provider under the United Kingdom’s Digital Identity and Attributes Trust Framework (DIATF), further underscoring the company’s rising profile as a provider of cutting-edge identity verification solutions globally.
(Originally published on Mobile ID World)