South Africa’s municipal elections are around the corner, and South Africans have until 8 August 2021 to register to vote. Luckily, the cumbersome process of heading to your closest registration station and battling through a sea of yellow, blue and red pop-up tents have come to an end. Thanks to the worldwide pandemic, South Africans can now head to an online portal to register to vote.
The Electoral Commission launched an online voter registration portal that’ll allow both new voters the ability to register, and old voters to update their registration. While funneling local voters online sounds like a swell idea, it’s important to consider the security of your personal information when doing so.
Registering’s never been this easy
Register online now for #2021Elections at https://t.co/WorsxgXJOo. It's safe, quick & easy. Share with loved ones as it's important to #StayHome #StaySafe. Already registered voters can use the portal to check & update their voters' roll address. #everyvoicetogether pic.twitter.com/W1ou1pjTmN
— IEC South Africa (@IECSouthAfrica) July 14, 2021
According to BusinessTech, “The system will utilise a number of security checks to ensure the integrity of the voters’ roll. These include the use of a One-Time-Pin (OTP) verification and the submission of a scan or photograph of the voter’s ID document”
This means citizens will not only verify their phone number via the OTP, but also their ID document by uploading a scanned copy. Don’t have a scanner? Of course, you don’t. That’s why you can quickly snap a pic of it using your smartphone too.
The Local Government Elections are scheduled for 27 October this year. The IEC is promoting voter registration leading up to D-day across social media.
A physical voter registration weekend will still happen on 31 July 2021, so if the smartphone you’re reading this on breaks before then, head out into the wild and be safe.