How Secure is Your Vote? | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
How Secure is Your Vote?
BY Alice Barr

With the election less than a month away, Donald Trump is ramping up his claims that the voting process is rigged.

This, as the Texas Attorney General's office is looking into concerns over voting fraud in Tarrant County. NBC 5 went to find out what's being done to protect your vote.

It is busy season for the Tarrant County Elections Administration.

It takes a lot of people and a lot of equipment to put on an election.

Among the stacks and stacks of gear in the administration offices, you’ll find equipment to make sure there's no fraud on Election Day.

An election year can feel like a maze to the finish line.

In Tarrant County, Frank Phillips is in charge of getting you there safely.

"I think you should have the utmost confidence in our voting system," said Phillips.

He's appointed, not elected, so he doesn’t have a party affiliation.

Right now, his office is working to process voting registrations and get equipment ready for early voting.

"As you can see, we've taken charge of all of our paper ballots for election day," said Phillips, pointing to huge boxes of paper.

He's also charged with securing the voting process.

The voting booths aren't connected to the internet or even any internal system.

"The possibility to hack that system, in the sense of someone from the outside using a computer to get into that system, is totally impossible," said Phillips.

The elections office also has steps in place to be sure every vote counts – just once.

“If you early vote, you’re going to be in our electronic system, so we’ll document and that keeps you from voting again,” said Phillips, adding that on Election Day. “You’re only going to be in the poll book at your location, where you’re supposed to vote. You can’t go vote at your assigned location and then go across town to another location because you’re not going to be in their poll book there.”

Mail-in ballots can be trickier.

A ballot board compares signatures on the application with the envelope the completed ballot comes in.

"We ensure that the person that filled out that application is the person returning that ballot," Phillips said.

But not everyone has confidence in that system.

Lon Burnam is a former State Representative who's questioned the outcome of elections in the past.

"Over the last several years, we've noticed increasing numbers of applications to vote by mail that are being processed by the same people and we have reason to believe, based on signatures, that the ballots themselves are being processed by people. That's an abuse," said Burnam, a Democrat who represented Fort Worth.

Now the Attorney General's Office is looking into complaints of voter fraud by mail-in ballot. But even Burnam questions the timing of that investigation, less than a month before the election.

"They've known about this problem for years,” said Burnam. “Now all of a sudden they're making big noise about it in October during a presidential election year?"

The Attorney General's Office, and Phillips, won't comment on the investigation for now, keeping the focus on the countdown to your vote.

The Tarrant County District Attorney's office is preparing to prosecute one separate case of alleged voter fraud.

NBC 5 checked with people who run elections across our other major counties as well.

In Dallas County, they've had one case of voter fraud. Collin and Denton counties report zero cases.