Voters heading to the polls in future elections could soon have the option of signing electronic poll books. The Wisconsin Elections Commission on Tuesday signed off on a plan that could have the technology available as early as next August.
Members of the agency’s board voted to have staff develop a system for clerks to use, rather than relying on an outside vendor. Board Chair Mark Thomsen was among members who argued that option could help increase the security of the system, and prevent hackers or others from trying to disrupt Wisconsin elections. “Where there have been hacks, it has been on voter registration and polling lists…and it seems to me that is where we’re really going to need the encryption and protection,” he said.
The plan approved by the Commission Tuesday would have staff run a pilot program during next year’s spring elections, with a no cost option widely available to local clerks by August of 2018.