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GR company designs 'ballot tracker' software

Posted at 6:25 PM, Jul 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-21 18:25:07-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — More Michiganders are expected to cast their ballots by mail in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

Kent Communications, Inc., has developed mail ballot tracking software called "TrackMIballot" to add an extra level of security and accountability to the voting process.

"We don't touch anything that has to do with voting," explained Brian Quist, TrackMIBallot founder and president of Kent Communications Inc. "The only thing that we're doing is placing barcodes on the outside of the envelope in place of the postal barcodes. So the barcode that gets the mail from you know, to your house will use that barcode to track it and to send it to your house. And then on the way back, we give the municipality a barcode to put on the envelope over the pre-printed one, and that barcode tracks the envelope on the way back."

The company is working with local election officials as the software is rolled out in several areas. So far, the city of Lansing, Walker, Grand Rapids Township and Cannon Township have signed on to use the program in upcoming elections.

Acording to a news release:

Using this new service, voting officials will be able to see when ballots are being delivered to voters, and to look up inquiries when a voter is wondering where their ballot is. The system is even capable of giving each voter their own secure web link where they can track their own ballot. When the ballot is placed back into the mail by the voter, TrackMIBallot will identify and track that ballot as it enters the postal mail stream, so the voter can be sure that the Postal Service has the ballot and is delivering it. The TrackMIBallot system can also let officials know that a ballot was put in the mail before the mailing deadline, and conform that each ballot traveled through the Postal Service.

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