State lawmakers are trying to figure out how to prevent Utah voters’ information from being used for personal gain after a New Hampshire man bought it from the state and posted it online. The Senate last week unanimously passed SB36 to limit access to the state’s voter registration rolls and prohibit putting it on the Internet. It includes exceptions for political, scholarly, journalistic and governmental purposes. But a House committee Monday expanded those exceptions to include banks, hospitals and insurance companies. It now goes the full House for consideration.
Some lawmakers say the amended bill strikes the right balance between people’s privacy and access to public information, while others say it doesn’t go far enough. “In its present form, it doesn’t solve the problem,” Rep. Ken Ivory, R-West Jordan, said during a House Government Operations Committee meeting.
Committee members were told the information could be used for credit card fraud, identity theft and targeting older people and single women. Ivory and Rep. John Mathis, R-Vernal, said they’ve received more email on the issue than almost any other this session.
New Hampshire resident Tom Alciere legally bought a copy of the voter information database for $1,050 and posted it online at utvoters.com. It includes birthdates, cellphone numbers and addresses. Alciere sells advertising on the website.