Online voter registration has become a “thing” in the last couple of years. When implemented properly, it makes it easier for voters — especially military and overseas voters — to register. It also helps maintain the accuracy of voter rolls; reduces the cost of list maintenance; reduces the inherent potential for error in paper-based systems; saves significant amounts of money; reduces delays and congestion at polling places; and improves the voter experience because voters get immediate feedback when they are registered or when their information has been updated. There are complications and subtleties, but as online voter registration becomes widespread, more ways are emerging to refine the process to better serve voters and election officials.
This piece provides five tips that will help as jurisdictions create an optimal online voter registration system:
• Allow as many eligible voters as possible to register online, including those without state-issued IDs.
• Have a mobile optimized website that is optimized for smart phones and tablets.
• Make the online voter registration website easy to use and understand, including by voters who have disabilities or limited English.
• Collaborate with local officials
• Make sure your online voter registration website is secure.
… Perhaps because the Internet is still relatively new, the public (and elected officials) often have less confidence in the security of online databases than public records. So even if it were not otherwise important (which it is), building public (and legislator) confidence in online registration requires steps be taken to ensure online voter registration systems effectively protect voters’ private information.
To that end, encryption, Captcha, and other programs can help protect against automated hacking. In the same vein, strategies/tools such as routine audit logs, secure networks, and unique identifiers can help impede unauthorized access.
Full Article: electionlineWeekly.