ELECTIONS

As voting scams go around, officials say to contact counties directly

Dec 22, 2023, 3:30 PM

Image of a ballot drop box , officials say voting scams can look legit...

FILE: A voter drops a ballot into a box at the Salt Lake County Government Center in Salt Lake City on Monday, Oct. 18, 2021. (Scott G Winterton/Deseret News)

(Scott G Winterton/Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — A scam text about voter registration is going around, just ahead of the 20 24 primary election. The scam text claims you’re not registered to vote, even if you are. 

The text says you’re not in their voting records and unregistered and then links to a scam website. Whether you’re registered or not, officials are said not to trust the text.

“It’s scary, frankly. And it’s a sign of things to come. And it’s only going to get worse, the scams and the use of AI and other things to create confusion among the voters,” said Weber County Clerk Ricky Hatch.

According to Hatch, a county would never send a text like this and they wouldn’t reach out just to let you know that you’re not registered.

“It’s scary because it can seem legitimate, and it fits all the classic signs of a scam,” Hatch said. “Reaching out unsolicited, a sense of urgency and a link that is not a .gov kind of link. So all of those are red flags that this is a scam.”

Although the texts are bogus, Hatch said it isn’t a bad idea to check your status. Instead of clicking on mystery links though, Hatch recommended contacting your local county clerk if you need help checking your registration status.

“Always good to call the counties and they’ll have folks that will help you make sure that you’re either registered or help you be able to get registered. It’s pretty quick and easy.”

So if you get a text, Hatch recommends ignoring and deleting it.

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As voting scams go around, officials say to contact counties directly