Seattle residents allowed to vote via smartphones


Smartphones have made voting easier, as King County in the US state of Washington, where Seattle is located, implements mobile voting in their board of supervisors election.

This is the first-time mobile voting is available to all eligible registered voters. Previous pilots in other jurisdictions were limited to overseas and military voters and/or voters with disabilities.

For this election which began on Wednesday and continues till February 11, all 1.2 million registered voters residing in King Conservation District’s (KCD) service area are eligible to vote on their mobile phones and other electronic devices using the Democracy Live platform in the upcoming election.

The pilot is a collaboration between KCD, King County Elections, electronic balloting developer Democracy Live, mobile-voting nonprofit Tusk Philanthropies, Tusk Philanthropies, and the National Cybersecurity Centre.

“We are proud to partner with King Conservation District as they pilot this mobile voting technology,” Julie Wise, King County Director of Elections, said in a statement.

“It will be easier than ever for voters to access their Conservation District ballot and cast their vote,” Wise added.

Eligible voters can participate in the election by opting in to vote electronically on their smartphones, laptops or even at their local library, Tusk Philanthropies said on Wednesday.

Participating voters can log into the secure Democracy Live portal on their smart devices using their name and date of birth to access and mark their ballot.

Once the voter has made all their selections, they get the opportunity to review their ballot to ensure it was marked correctly.

Upon confirming their selections, voters will submit their signature to verify their submission before electronically returning their ballot.

Voters also get the option to print and return their marked ballots via local drop boxes throughout the county, or to mail in their ballot.

Ballots will be verified and tabulated by King County Elections.

“The more people vote, the more government reflects the will of the people,” said Bradley Tusk, CEO and Founder of Tusk Philanthropies.

“That’s why today’s announcement is so historic: 1.2 million people can now vote securely on their phones. It’s the biggest innovation in democracy in years and we are extremely grateful to King Conservation District and King County Elections for making it happen,” Tusk said.