A complete overhaul of the voting system is needed, including possibly using new technology to allow voters to register on polling day or cast electronic votes, the chair of the Electoral Commission has urged.
Jenny Watson warned that the way people were being asked to engage with politics and the voting system was becoming “increasingly disconnected” from how they interacted with each other and other institutions, from their “banking arrangements to their weekly shop”.
“The UK needs an ambitious and comprehensive strategy for bringing the way we vote into the modern age,” she said in a speech to a Constitution Unit meeting at University College London. She noted that a new system of online vote registration would be launched in June, adding that the Commission would be looking at further possibilities.
Against the background of concerns that internet voting would be at risk from hacking and fraud, she said: “We will, of course, need to consider carefully the balance between the security of the system as opposed to its accessibility.”