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Don't fall for this viral voting scam

Don't fall for this viral voting scam
photo courtesy of SHUTTERSTOCK

The 2016 presidential election is about to come to a close. Voters who have not already cast a ballot will head to their polling location on Tuesday, November 8 to do so. Have you cast your vote yet?

There have already been several shocking subplots in this year's election cycle. From hacks to scandals to leaked tapes and emails, the campaigns of both candidates have been targeted. We've even told you that officials are worried about 5 possible hacks that could plague Election Day.

But what about voters? There's a new viral scam that you should be worried about because, if you fall for it, your vote won't count.

Most people know that if you want to cast a vote in the upcoming election, you have to do it in person on Election Day. There are a few exceptions as some states have early voting, where you can cast your ballot during a specified period before Election Day. Also, some states allow registered voters to vote early by mail and absentee ballots.

Now, there are scammers spreading hoax images online that try and convince you otherwise. These images look like they are from the official campaigns of the candidates, but they are not. The scammers are claiming that voters can save time by skipping the line at the polls and cast their vote from home through a text.

Someone on Twitter with the username @mcnees posted a collection of some of the fake images. Here is what they look like:

So far, the images spreading around social media appear to be aimed at Clinton supporters, but the scam could easily be adapted to target Trump supporters as well.

Bottom line: If you see anything claiming you can cast your vote via text message, it's a scam.

What you should do

  • Let people know - Now that you're informed about this scam you should spread the word to everyone you know. If you or anyone who you know hasn't already cast your ballot by other legitimate means, you will have to do it in person at your polling location on Tuesday.
  • Learn voting rules - If you intend to vote in person on Election Day, you can find out all the details at usa.gov/election-day. Here you will find such information as election dates, voter ID requirements, voter accessibility laws, polling locations and sample ballots.
  • Get state-wide voting guidance - If you want additional local information, you can get it on your state's election office website. Select your state from the list you'll find at usa.gov/election-office and it will take you to the information you need.

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