A new methodology for fingerprinting and watermarking three-dimensional (3-D) graphical objects is proposed in this paper. The 3-D graphical objects are described by means of polygonal meshes. The information to be embedded is provided as a binary code. A watermarking methodology has two stages: embedding and detecting the information that has been embedded in the given media. The information is embedded by means of local geometrical perturbations while maintaining the local connectivity. A neighborhood localized measure is used for selecting appropriate vertices for watermarking. A study is undertaken in order to verify the suitability of this measure for selecting vertices from regions where geometrical perturbations are less perceptible. Two different watermarking algorithms, that do not require the original 3-D graphical object in the detection stage, are proposed. The two algorithms differ with respect to the type of constraint to be embedded in the local structure: by using parallel planes and bounding ellipsoids, respectively. The information capacity of various 3-D meshes is analyzed when using the proposed 3-D watermarking algorithms. The robustness of the 3-D watermarking algorithms is tested to noise perturbation and to object cropping.