February 27, 2013
- GlobalSign K.K
GlobalSign to Launch Verification Services for Online Election Campaigning
New services to verify websites and emails for new and incumbent candidates and political parties running in Japan’s national elections
Tokyo, Japan -- February 27, 2013, GlobalSign K.K, digital certificate services provider, a GMO CLOUD subsidiary and GMO Internet Group company, today announced the upcoming availability of three new services for government elections, Election Candidate Verification and Member of Government Verification, and Political Party Verification. Following the Japanese government’s decision to repeal a ban on online election campaigning for government elections, GlobalSign moved quickly to introduce a method of protecting political candidates, members of government and political parties from impersonation attacks such as phishing and email spoofing. Pre-registration for the new election campaign authentication services opened today and the service is expected to be available from late March.
*These services will be provided free of charge to all political parties to the extent permissible by Japanese Political Funds Control Law
The Japanese parliament is currently deliberating amendments to the Public Offices Election Act, that would lift restrictions on online election campaigning. If the amendments do go ahead it is expected that online campaigning activities could be permitted for the House of Councilors election this summer. The government recognizes the potential risk of fraudulent websites and email impersonating candidates or sitting members and is considering imposing penalties against such actions, but security measures are yet to be fully addressed.
In 2010 when repealing the prohibition of online campaigning was first raised, GlobalSign began to develop services that would enable secure and trusted online campaign activities and protect against fraudulent websites. At the time the proposal was defeated, but GlobalSign continued to develop services for online campaigns confident that the bans would eventually be lifted. The three new services announced today for election candidates, members of government and political parties are a result of this continued effort.
The entire GMO Internet Group has helped drive the initiative to end restrictions on online campaigning. GlobalSign is offering to provide the service free of charge to political parties, and candidates as part of this effort. Already several organizations have committed to adopting the new services including the Liberal Democratic Party for it website (candidate and member of government verification), the Democratic Party and the Japan Restoration party will implement all three services for their respective websites, and Your Party has decided to adopt the three services for both its website and email communications.
The new services provides verification from a reputed Certificate Authority that websites and email communications are both official and authentic for election candidates and political parties.
Election Candidate/ Member of Government /Political Party Verification for Websites (Free)
The site seal displayed on verified sites instantly reassures visitors that they are visiting the “official site” of the candidate, member or party.
Election Candidate/ Government Member/Political Party Verification for Email (Paid)
The digital signature attached to official email reassures the recipient that communication is authentic and sent from the candidate, member or party.
The following political parties have decided to adopt the new services.
Liberal Democratic Party
With the ban on election campaigning set to be lifted, the Liberal Democratic Party welcomes this initiative from a private company. Digital certificate services are the only effective method of protecting against website and emails impersonation and we are pushing for these measures to be adopted by the entire government.
The Democratic Party believes that elections should be about the voter and for this reason it is essential to lift the ban on online election campaigning. As Japanese political parties push to allow online campaigning, the issue of online fraud is gaining more attention. We are very pleased to see security measures being developed amidst this debate. We look for to establishing a safe and secure environment for voters to interact with political candidates and parties.
Japan Restoration Party
Incidents of online identity fraud are increasingly being reported in the news media, and this is one of the key issues we must consider as we prepare to lift the ban on online election campaigning. The Japan Restoration Party is very active online and will aggressively pursue measures that will help to ensure secure online election campaigning.
One of the biggest concerns we face if we lift the ban on online election campaigning is online identity fraud and defamation. Your Party believes that the answer to this risk is not to restrict freedom, but to grow Internet literacy by allowing Japanese Internet users to learn from experience. We believe this service supports the independent acquisition of knowledge and experience by Internet users and we hope to see more of such activity.
Japan Association of New Economy
The Japan Association of New Economy supports the proposal to allow online election campaign activities, to encourage policy-driven campaigns and increase voter participation. We believe the GlobalSign service is an innovative and effective initiative from a private company.
We hope to see more initiatives from all related parties aimed at establishing a sound environment for online election campaigning.
The GlobalSign Certificate Authority has been providing digital authentication services to Belgium since the industry first emerged more than ten years ago. Customers include a number of Belgian government agencies and the GlobalSign Certificate Authority operates many prestigious government projects such as eID*(BELPIC). We are recognized as the Belgian Government Certificate Authority. GlobalSign became a member of the GMO Internet Group in 2006 and is expanding sales of government-level security Japan and worldwide. As an industry leader GlobalSign is actively involved in CABF (CA/Browser Forum), and the Anti-Phishing Working Group. GlobalSign has issued over 400,000 certificates to organizations including government institutions and major corporations.
*eID: A citizen ID card. This is the first stage of the e-government project in Belgium. The ID card containing a digital certificate is distributed to all Belgian citizens over the age of 12.
About GMO Internet Group
GMO Internet Group is a comprehensive provider of industry-leading Internet solutions including domain name registration, cloud-based and traditional hosting, ecommerce, security, and payment processing services that each hold the top share of their respective markets in Japan. Other key business areas for the Group include online securities/FX trading, Internet advertising, search engine marketing and online research, and smartphone game development and publishing. GMO Internet, Inc. (TSE: 9449) is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. Please visit http://www.gmo.jp/en for more information.
GMO Internet, Inc.