Brazil expands biometric voting for October election
29 September 2014 13:13 GMT

Brazil has targeted registering the fingerprints of all 141.8 million eligible voters by 2018

Over 15% of Brazil’s 141.8 million voters are set to cast ballots in the country’s 5 October general election using biometric technology, according to government bodies.

The Superior Electoral Court (TSE) confirmed that fingerprint-enabled vote readers will be available in 15 state capitals, encompassing 762 municipalities – meaning 21 million people will be able to use the system.

In its 2010 general election, only around 1.1 million were registered for the biometrics service.

“It’s the safest process in existence,” TSE IT Secretary Giuseppe Janino told Agencia Brasil about biometric voting. “Biometric identification is considerably safer and more accurate than regular, man-operated identification.”

To avoid electoral fraud, since 2008 the country has used numeric keyboards rather than ballot papers. Voters type in a number for the candidates and see the picture of the person they're voting for. The devices – supplied by Diebold – are not connected to any kind of network during voting hours, and they have several physical security measures, such as tamper proof locks, seals and intusion sensors.

Voting is compulsory in Brazil, and the TSE has targeted registering all eligible Brazilian citizens by their fingerprints before the next general elections in 2018.

In 2011, DigitalPersona announced that the company’s U.are.U fingerprint biometrics had been incorporated by Diebold into the electronic voting system used in the successful 2010 Brazilian national election.

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