Voter calls don't seek financial information


August 24, 2008|By Dan Thanh Dang

Unsolicited e-mails and phone calls from scammers, claiming to represent your local election board or civic group, are trying to trick you into sharing your Social Security, credit card or bank account number to confirm your eligibility or registration to vote, the Federal Trade Commission warned.

As a rule, the FTC says, organizations conducting legitimate voter registration drives either contact you in person or give you a voter registration form that you fill out yourself. They will never ask you to provide financial information, the FTC says.

If you should get one of these unsolicited e-mails or calls that say they want to confirm your voter registration, report it to the FTC online at or call (877)FTC-HELP.

To register to vote - and to find out whether your state requires your Social Security number for registration - contact your local election office, or check the U.S. Election Assistance Commission's National Voter Registration Form at Most states accept this form, but many states and localities have their own rules about how far before an election you must register to be able to vote, and whether a Social Security number is required.

In Maryland, your Social Security number is not needed to register, and your application must be received by a state election office no later than 9 p.m., 21 days before an election.

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