People visiting the state portal were met on Tuesday with the message: “Citizen portal is temporarily unavailable due to network outage.”
The site is used for first time registration as well as registration updates. It allows Virginians to apply for an absentee vote and see the location of their individual polling place. The Election Department allows registration through a paper form that can be mailed, but must be postmarked on Tuesday, the deadline for new voters to register for the November election.
Election Department spokesman Andrea Gaines said the problem was a cut fiber cable. He did not anticipate when the system would return but was told that service restoration was in progress.
“This morning the Election Department was alerted by the Virginia Information Technology Agency to a fiber cut near Rt. 10 in Chester near the Commonwealth Enterprise Solutions Center (CESC), data circuits and virtual private networks (VPNs) for many Commonwealth agencies. Was affecting connectivity., “Gaines said in a statement. “It has impacted the Department’s civic portal with local registrar offices across the Commonwealth.”
Fairfax said, “I am officially talking of extending the Virginia registration deadline, because of the service affecting voters’ ability to register statewide.”
Election Department officials did not immediately comment on whether the registration would be extended.
Authorities in Florida are also dealing with a fall from the failure of voter registration computer systems.
He issued a small extension of the registration window, but a federal court turned down a petition to grant a longer extension.
The judge said in sharp opinion that Florida, home to NASA’s space launch facilities, has chronic electoral problems.
Judge Mark E. “Florida has failed to figure out how to run the election properly – a task simpler than rocket science,” Walker wrote.
This story has been updated with additional details.
Kurt Devine of CNN contributed to this report.