Security of Ballot Delivery

This topic is for discussions of security-related issues associated with the BallotDeliveryUseCase

Security Considerations

Information Types:

  • Ballot styles
Security Objectives and Impact Levels
  • Confidentiality: Low
  • Integrity: Moderate
  • Availability: Moderate
  • Ballot marking considerations should be discussed on the BallotMarkingSecurity topic.
  • Scenarios include:
    • Blank Ballot Delivery
      • Polling place voting systems
      • Postal mail
      • Electronic (e.g., email, web)
    • Voted Ballot Return
      • Polling place voting systems
      • Postal mail
      • Electronic (e.g., email, web)
  • There are few unique security considerations for ballot distribution in polling places, beyond those covered by BallotOnDemandSecurity or BallotMarkingSecurity.
  • Electronic Blank Ballot Delivery- Major Security Considerations:
    • Ability to reliably match voters to ballot style
    • Integrity of blank ballots
    • Availability of the system
  • Electronic Ballot Return- Major Security Considerations:
    • This is a form of Internet voting
    • Major challenges include the auditibility of such systems, the ability to authenticate voters while maintaining voter privacy, and the ability to protect against malware.
    • See the resources identified at the bottom of this topic for more information

VVSG Security Gap Analysis

Applicability of the VVSG 1.1 and/or draft VVSG 2.0

  • VVSG 1.1: Absentee voting systems out-of-scope
  • VVSG 2.0: Absentee voting systems out-of-scope
Estimated Level-of-Effort to Address
  • Polling Place Systems: Minimal- already addressed or addressed by other use cases
  • Absentee/Remote Voting:
    • Electronic Ballot Delivery: Moderate- while these systems are very different from polling place systems, general cybersecurity best practices for IT systems could be applied and tailored to online blank ballot delivery portals. Guidelines could have significant overlap with online voter registiration database guidelines under the VrdbSecurity use case.
    • Electronic Ballot Return: High- there are fundamental challenges in technology and the supporting infrastructure.
Gap Areas
  • Blank Ballot Delivery
  • Voted Ballot Return

Related Resources:


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Topic revision: r4 - 2016-09-12 - AndrewRegenscheid
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