South Dakota system to help service members submit absentee ballots


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South Dakota launched a new system to help the state’s military service members cast absentee ballots.

Called the Innovative Overseas Absentee-Balloting System (otherwise known as iOASIS), the system allows service members to vote using their Common Access Card combined with new technology to help troops vote from abroad.

“The iOASIS program is based on a concept of simplicity,” South Dakota Secretary of State Jason Gant said. “These voters will now be able to register to vote, request an absentee ballot, receive an absentee ballot and mark an absentee ballot in seconds. The ballot is then printed and returned for counting. This is only possible by utilizing the security of the Common Access Card for validation to verify our overseas voters and turn a 60-day process into a less than 5-minute transaction.”

The iOASIS program has been successfully tested nearly 1,000 times with the assistance of the South Dakota National Guard. It increases the percentage of successful ballots; reduces the failure rates (such as blank absentee ballot delivery, absentee ballot tabulation, absentee ballot return verification); and establishes and maintains techniques and best practices of election officials and their services for these voters.

The iOASIS program will be launched in 2014 elections.

“An integral part of iOASIS is the new state-of-the art election management system that has streamlined the voting process in South Dakota,” Gant said. “This system guarantees the security, efficiency and accuracy when validating the absentee process for overseas voters in real time. The critical component is the addition of the Common Access Card which verifies and authenticates the identity of the voter.”

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South Dakota, States