Wildlife trafficking and illegal trade activities, a focus of many NGOs and organizations, is a major threat to environment. It disturbs the whole food chain network. So, we thought why not to use our skills and learning to contribute towards combating wildlife trafficking. If our technology-driven solution can help the organisations or NGOs to monitor or track the target efficiently, then as a responsible citizen, we should contribute towards this social cause in possible way.

What FLAGiT does

FLAGiT has the potential to help the NGOs and other wildlife organizations by giving them an authority to monitor the critical regions where trafficking/other illegal activity occurs. When such a location/entity is found, it is flagged by the NGO investigator. And if there is another NGO who wants to monitor or investigate the same entity, then the name of the investigator of the other NGO will be displayed keeping in mind the security factor and the NGO can contact them through email relay. Since if many Investigators/NGOs come into action(working on the same entity) without knowing the existence of each other, then due to over-policing and enquiries the trafficker might get alert.

Also, the centralised hub or point of contact is the enforcement agency which monitors everything. Agency will monitor the NGOs as well as investigators. And NGOs will be monitoring their investigators. This provides a way to stop data leakage by making it difficult for the investigator to switch NGO as agency will take action on such issues.

Further, after implementing blockchain model, this application will provide a platform for data sharing between organisations working on same entity having trust factor between them (a secure way of collaboration).

How we built it

The application FLAGiT is built completely using Android Studio with JAVA as native programming language. For secure/private database requirement, we have used Firebase API for Realtime Database (used by a number of top applications on Google Play Store itself) to store not only the data/details for different NGO's and their investigators involved, but also the information of every trafficker(flagged/unflagged) added by Investigators.

Realtime Database benefits our application for Realtime Flagging/De-Flagging of Trafficker in database for no clash of transaction. Also, the application uses Firebase Authentication Service for the 2-Step Authentication process using OTP.

Challenges we ran into

The generic searching of the database has to be done in an efficient manner. Moreover, the search should provide the limited details of the person while trying to flag an entity which is already flagged. The main challenge was with respect to data privatisation and data leakage. We need to make it as secure as possible. So, we thought of many different ways. And at last, settled down with a 2- way authentication strategy as well as controlling the read/write access of the database by different categories of the hierarchy.

Another challenge was to develop the trust factor among the NGOs and the solution to this is the implementation of blockchain technology.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

We managed the issue of data hiding and data leakage by implementing Database Privatisation. Controlling the access requirements (read/write) at different levels of the hierarchy ( Enforcement agency/NGOs and other organisations/Investigators) by specifying some rules and linking it to the database.

The security factor was another main issue that we accomplished by implementing a 2-factor authentication strategy (OTP linked to a specific cell number). Also, the Blockchain Model we crafted for the same to build the trust factor among different NGOs counts for it too.

What we learned

We learned how we could further implement the blockchain technology in our application for making it way too secure and to build trust among the NGOs with respect to the issue of data sharing.

What's next for FLAGiT

As per our future vision, we will work on the following aspects:

  • make our app available to other platforms such as iOS and Windows
  • helping different organizations to collaborate with each other for the purpose of mission team/resource sharing/ data sharing/ other purposes i.e. various ways of collaboration between organizations.
  • Voice encrypted communication platform for organisations as text communication is not possible everytime.
  • 2-way authentication using iris recognition
  • implement multiple language support using i18n so that application can be used all over the world
  • using Blockchain technology to secure data which is private to an NGO. We made a blockchain model that is capable of carrying out data security and privacy between different NGO.


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