Remember When 100,000 Voters' Names Were Left Off The Rosters? Now We Know What Happened

Residents of Boyle Heights vote in the primary election on Tuesday, June 5, 2018. (File photo by Signe Larsen/KPCC)

Remember that glitch back in June that left over 100,000 names off Los Angeles County voter rosters? Well, a new report out Wednesday points to the cause of the massive error.

An investigation by IBM Security Services has identified a software problem as the root of a printing error that left voters confused and angry and poll workers overwhelmed.

According to the investigation, new file formatting changes to the statewide voter database were not compatible with the county's system. That led to empty spaces for the birthdates of more than 118,000 voters.

This confused L.A. County's voter information management system. As a result, it mistakenly classified the voters as underage — and then left them off the printed precinct rosters.

IBM has advised the county to update the software code and implement new quality control practices.

The county says steps are being taken to ensure the problem doesn't happen again. The county paid $230,000 for the review.


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