Electronic Voting Pilot for Town Meeting 2018

Electronic Voting Pilot for Town Meeting 2018

Hopkinton Town Moderator to Introduce Electronic Voting at Town Meeting

The Town of Hopkinton announces an electronic voting pilot program that will debut at Town
Meeting to increase participation, ensure accuracy, and allow for a prompt tally of votes.

The decision was made to pilot electronic voting with the Boston based company, Voatz, due to
the technology, ease of use, security, and on-site support provided at meetings. We are
committed to a Town Meeting that allows for full discussion of the the important issues facing
Hopkinton, while increasing the efficiency and participation of each meeting.

Residents voting at ATM 2018 will have the ability to vote electronically on their own personal
compatible device (Android 2016 or newer or iPhone 5s or newer). If a resident does not have
a personal compatible device, there will be dozens of available tablets spread throughout the
auditorium where residents will be able to cast their votes. For those that may be mobility
impaired or not able to leave their seats, we will have tablets available to be brought over to
you.

How does this all work? When you arrive at Town Meeting, check in if you are a registered
voter and you will receive a voter card with a QR code (quick response) on it in addition to the
color coded voting card you’ve received in the past. This QR code is unique and is your “ticket
to vote” electronically.

If you plan to use the Voatz app on your personal device:
You should download and register to use the app prior to the start of Town Meeting, so you’re
ready to go for the first vote. You can download the app here: https://hopkintonma.voatz.com/

When you’re at Town Meeting, simply scan the QR code from the vote ticket you received at
check-in with your personal compatible device, at which point your device is now authorized to
vote. By scanning your QR code, you’ve passed your “ticket to vote” from the paper copy QR
code, and onto your device. Any time a vote is required, you will open the Voatz app on your
device, and cast your vote. Once you’ve confirmed your selection, you will then authenticate on
your phone using the security you’ve setup on your device to “unlock” it (this is device specific
and may include a pin, a fingerprint, drawing an unlock pattern, etc.) If you have no security
setup on your device to unlock it, you will be prompted to enter the 6-digit code you created
when you registered for Voatz. That final step is required to authenticate you as the registered
voter on your device.

If you plan to use a tablet provided by Voatz to cast your vote:
You will simply scan your QR code, cast your vote, and then confirm you selection. It’s that
easy.

Security Measures:
To prevent potential misuse, each QR code may only be used to vote once per question. That
is, if you’ve registered your QR code to your personal device, and have voted on an article, you
will be unable to take your QR code to a tablet and vote again on the same article. This
authentication is done on a per article or per vote basis. If you’ve been using your personal
device to vote for most of the evening, but then run out of battery life, you will be able to take
your QR code vote ticket to a tablet station to vote.

If you have questions, please feel free to call the Town Clerk’s office at 508-497-9710 or email
at townclerk@hopkintonma.gov .


Voatz – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Is there anything I can do before my Town Meeting to be prepared to use Voatz?
Yes! You can download the Voatz App on your smartphone (via the URL at the bottom of this
document) and complete the initial registration process.

Q: Do I need a smartphone?
You can use a compatible personal smartphone. If you don’t have a compatible smartphone, you can still vote at Town Meeting via the Voatz iPad tablets.

Q: What kind of smartphones are supported?
iPhone 5s or newer devices, and compatible Android (model 2016 or newer) devices.

Q: How do I vote if I don’t have a phone?
You’ll be able to vote from a Voatz iPad tablet at your Town Meeting.

Q: Can I vote remotely?
No. You must be physically present at the town meeting in order to access the ballots and submit
your vote. Remote voting is not permitted at this time.

Q: Will you keep a record of how I vote?
No. The ballots will be configured as a secret ballot so only you will know how you have voted.

Q: What do you do with my data?
Upon being verified as a registered voter in your town, any personal identity information is deleted
from our records and is never shared with any outside party. This ensures the highest levels of
security and data privacy while maintaining your verification status as a voter, thus enabling you to
vote.

Q: How do I know Voatz is secure?
Voatz uses the latest data security technologies such as biometrics and the blockchain to ensure that the integrity of your vote is not compromised. All data is fully protected using the highest levels of security.

Q: How do I know only Hopkinton town registered voters are participating?
When you check-in with your Town meeting staff, they will verify that you’re a registered voter and will give you a scannable credential, which will allow you to vote via a compatible smartphone or a tablet. Only voters with this physical credential can vote.

Q: What if I have trouble at the meeting?
Trained Town volunteers and Voatz staff will be onsite to assist with training and voting.

For more information on how to use Voatz, please look at some brief tutorials at https://hopkintonma.voatz.com.


Get the App Set-Up in Advance

 



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