Feeds

Don't snap SELFIES at the polls – it may screw up voting, says official

Cameras, perfectly legal. Telling Twitter how someone voted, less so

Application security programs and practises

The selfie craze that continues to sweep the country could land some Brits in trouble if they unwittingly let slip how someone else votes in tomorrow's local and European elections.

The Electoral Commission has advised staff at polling stations to discourage such activity, the BBC reports.

"We have told staff that if they see anyone taking a photograph they should ask the person to delete it but not try to wrestle the phone out of their hands," an electoral services manager at an East of England local authority told the Beeb.

"It would depend on exactly what they were taking a photograph of. We have told them to take a note of the names and addresses of anyone doing it. But we would not necessarily call the police."

It is not a crime to snap silly, duckface pictures of yourself when casting a vote. But revealing how someone else has ticked the box is illegal.

Fines of up to £5,000 and six months in the slammer are the penalty for those who do inadvertently disclose such information to others.

If staff see anyone taking a photograph they should ask the person to delete it but not try to wrestle the phone out of their hands.

Section 66A of the 1983 Representation of the People's Act details the "secrecy requirements" that must be observed when voting is taking place. It states:

No person shall –

interfere with or attempt to interfere with a voter when recording his vote, [or] otherwise obtain or attempt to obtain in a polling station information as to the referendum answer for which a voter in that station is about to vote or has voted;

communicate at any time to any person any information obtained in a polling station as to the referendum answer for which a voter in that station is about to vote or has voted, or as to the number or other unique identifying mark on the back of the ballot paper given to a voter at that station; [or]

directly or indirectly induce a voter to display his ballot paper after he has marked it so as to make known to any person the referendum answer for which he has or has not voted.

Apparently, some polling station workers will also have be clued up on what a selfie is, but they need only look at some of the fine examples offered by all of the UK's party leaders, who have gurned their way through many such photo ops in the runup to Thursday's elections.

Such a selfie, for the uninitiated, is really the Web2.0rhea equivalent of a politician holding a babe in arms. David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband all need to be seen to be doing it these days. ®

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

More from The Register

next story
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter
You'd better not be talking about the council's housing plans
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.