It is being claimed that election technology company Smartmatic is being utilised in New Zealand’s 2023 general election in order to rig the vote.
The claim is false. Smartmatic is not involved in the October 14 election.
A Facebook video (screenshot here) shows images of New Zealand National Party (National) election signs being vandalised, with text stating: “CORRUPTION – 2023 NZ ELECTIONS RIGGED FOR A NATIONAL WIN COMPLIMENTS OF SMARTMATIC VOTING SYSTEM.”
Smartmatic, which is best known for its voting and counting technology, has assisted in elections across more than 30 countries since 2000.
The company told AAP FactCheck it has nothing to do with the NZ election.
“Smartmatic is not supplying any election technology or services to any election authorities in New Zealand for the upcoming election,” a representative said.
Election experts confirmed the technology company has no role in the election and told AAP FactCheck votes in New Zealand are not counted by machines.
A video on the commission’s website shows how votes are counted by hand.
In a response to a citizen’s Official Information Act request filed in 2020, the commission noted: “The Electoral Commission has not had any involvement or communication with Smartmatic, nor any approaches from Smartmatic.”
Andrew Geddis, a law professor at the University of Otago, also said the post’s claim was “entirely false”.
“Voting in New Zealand does not use any Smartmatic technology at all for any part of the voting process,” Professor Geddis said.
Acknowledging the multiple defamation suits it has filed over the 2020 US election, Smartmatic said it defended its reputation from attacks that “damage the credibility and integrity of all elections”.
“The widespread presence of election misinformation and disinformation is a regrettable aspect of contemporary society,” a company representative told AAP FactCheck.
The claim that voting technology company Smartmatic will be used to help rig the New Zealand election is false.
Election experts told AAP FactCheck the election technology company has no role in the October 14 vote.
Vote-counting machines are not used in NZ elections.
False – The claim is inaccurate.