State is first to allow voter registration via Facebook

Washington State is trying to drum up voter registration with a new app that lets residents register via Facebook.

Users who click on the app will be directed to online registration forms on the secretary of state’s Facebook page. And although Facebook will request access to automatically fill out basic information such as name and date of birth, the company will not be collecting the information, according to the Associated Press.

The information, which will also include a state driver’s license number or other state ID number, is going to the state’s database, which Facebook does not have access to, a Washington election official told AP.

Washington worked on the project, the first of its kind, with Facebook and Microsoft, which developed the app. It is expected to go live this week.

Washington is one of nine states that allow online voter registration, along with Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Oregon and Utah, according to ThinkProgress.org. It’s also allowed in Clark County, Nev., and is pending in California.

Other states are considering online registration and many make forms available online, but because their laws require an original signature on the form, they still require that the forms be mailed in or hand-delivered.

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