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Illinois leaving ‘Crosscheck’ voter fraud system due to security, reliability concerns

A big move by the state of Illinois promises to make your voter information safer. The State Board of Elections voted to withdraw from the crosscheck multi-state voter fraud prevention system.

At the Adam’s County Clerks office, people come to register to vote– but when they register to vote, their information also goes to inter-state systems designed to prevent voter fraud– but now Illinois is withdrawing from one of those systems, after concerns of about reliability and security.

Adams County Clerk Chuck Venvertloh said it was easy to simply stop sharing information with ‘Crosscheck’– as they’ve already been working with the new Electronic Registration Information Center or ERIC for awhile now.

“They’ve been dumping information to us to make it more up to date, anything we can do to have more up-to-date information, when someone moves, we can get that information back to us so we can take them off our voter roll,” said Venvertloh.

State Board of Elections member Charles Scholz said crosscheck has had a reputation of being vulnerable to hackers and not very sophisticated.

“The problem with crosscheck is that it’s controversial,” said Scholz, “it’s alleged that it’s been used for voter suppression not in Illinois but they could find a false positive with an Illinois voter and use that to prevent someone from voting in another state.”

And Scholz said that controversy has kept one bordering state from sharing information with Illinois.

“Indiana would not enter into an agreement with us as long as we were part of crosscheck so we’re getting out of crosscheck, we’ll share with the other states through this ERIC system and then with Indiana we’re just going to do a bi-lateral agreement,” said Scholz.

An aspect Venvertloh admits could be concerning if an agreement isn’t reached with Indiana quickly.

“Could be a little bit of a lull, as far as someone moving from Indiana to Illinois or vice versa and not being able to get that information,” said Venvertloh, adding that perspective nothing should change, “it will have absolutely no impact on a voter going to the poll on election day.”

Scholz said it seems like the last hurdle to making that bi-lateral agreement with Indiana was Illinois’ participation with crosscheck– meaning that agreement could be made in the coming weeks.

Officials said the vote to have Illinois removed from the crosscheck system on Tuesday was unanimous, and effective as soon as it was passed.

Frank Healy

Multimedia Journalist at WGEM

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