Estonians Vote in Parliamentary Election by Mobile Phone
Published on: 7th Mar 2011
Note -- this news article is more than a year old.
TeliaSonera's subsidiary, the mobile operator EMT in Estonia, has created a world's first mobile identification service which makes it possible to vote via a mobile phone. The service enabled the citizens of Estonia to cast their vote to yesterday's parliamentary elections via their mobile phone for the first time in the world.
TeliaSonera's subsidiary EMT has created a Mobile ID-service that enables verification of people's identity over the Internet, digital signature, and now casting votes electronically as well.
"It is a technological breakthrough that a mobile phone could be used for giving legally binding digital signature replacing handwritten signature on paper. We are very proud to be able to use this kind of innovative mobile service for voting in elections. Additionally all kind of other e-services can be used with the Mobile ID in Estonia", says Håkan Dahlström, President of Mobility Services."
Electronic voting by ID card has been used in Estonia already for six years - since the local elections in 2005. The number of e-voters has grown constantly from 1.9% to 15.8% of total voters in 2009 local elections.
"Estonia has stood out with adoption of innovative e-solutions in the past as well and I'm pleased that voting with Mobile ID becomes the next step in our pro-tech development", said Juhan Parts, Minister of Economic Affairs and Communications.
EMT launched Mobile ID service in May 2007. Mobile ID service was initially available only for EMT customers for using e-services created by both private (e-banking, e-service environments) and public (state portal eesti.ee, e-Tax Board, etc.) sectors. Other Estonian mobile operators joined the service platform created by EMT at a later time. In February 2011, new wording of Identity Documents Act that makes Mobile ID a state-approved electronic document as of February 1st 2011 entered into force. In addition to verification of an identity and digital signatures, new state-approved Mobile ID enables to cast votes in elections as well.