Virginia voters who are unable to make it to the polls for next month’s election now have the option of applying online for an absentee ballot. The Virginia Department of Elections launched a new website feature Wednesday morning that allows voters to sign an application electronically using their Social Security number and information on a driver’s license or identification card issued by the DMV.
The new system comes amid debate over the security of allowing electronic signatures in the elections process. This month, Republican elections officials raised concerns to the State Board of Elections that the new policy allowing electronic signatures opened the door to potential fraud by making it easier for a third party to improperly obtain a ballot using a voter’s personal information.
The state board said it intends to revisit the issue after the Nov. 3 election, when every General Assembly seat and a variety of local races will be on the ballot.