Postal voting is voting in an election whereby ballot papers are distributed to electors or returned by post, in contrast to electors voting in person at a polling station or electronically via an electronic voting system. Historically, postal votes must be distributed and placed in return mail before the scheduled election day, it is sometimes referred to as a form of early voting. It can also be used as an absentee ballot. However, in recent times the model in the US has morphed, in municipalities that use postal voting exclusively, to be one of ballots being mailed out to voters, but the return method taking on alternatives of return by mail or dropping off the ballot in person via secure drop boxes and/or voting centers. Postal voting refers only to the means by which the ballots are submitted, not to the method by which the votes are counted. Election officials may count the votes by processing the mailed-in ballots through electronic voting machines, or may count the votes manually. To enable as many voters as possible to participate, postal voting can assist people who may not be able to attend a polling station in person, for example because of a physical disability, absence from the locality or some other reason. Postal voting is generally available to voters upon application, sometimes with restrictions. If no reason for a request is required, it may be called postal vote on demand. Postal voting may be an option for voters in some jurisdictions, while in some elections there may be all-postal voting. A form of postal voting was introduced in Western Australia in 1877, followed by an improved method in South Australia in 1890. On the other hand, concerns about postal voting have been raised as to whether it complies with the requirements of a secret ballot, in that people cast their vote outside the security of a polling station, and whether voters can cast their vote privately free from another person's coercion. There have been cases of electoral fraud with postal votes in the United Kingdom (including in Birmingham at the 2004 European and local government elections in the UK).