Elections Security

Elections Security Q & A:  

Q: How do I know that my vote is secure?

          A: The machine that you use to vote on and the computer that is used to tally votes are not connected to anything except electricity. The system that contains your vote is “closed,” meaning it is not connected to the internet or WiFi at all. 

Q: Are the iPads used at the polls secure? 

          A: The iPads are connected to each other via Bluetooth, so while it’s possible to “hack” Bluetooth, it’s unlikely and difficult to do. Also, note that the only information that is stored on these iPads is information that is already available to the public- the voter history on it could be asked for. Sensitive information such as social security numbers is not made public, and the vote that you cast is never stored on the iPads.

Q: Are the laptops used at the polls secure?

          A: The laptops are like the iPads in the information that they hold; all information held on the laptops is already publicly available. However, the laptops work through a secure VPN. This can technically be “hacked” with some difficulty, but the information is already public.

Q: How is the check-in process secured?

          A: When you “check-in” before you get to the voting machines, the Registrar does take your personal information, but this is not tied to the vote you cast. It does not save your photo nor does it take a photo of your ID.

Q: What if I lose my 5-digit access code after I have voted, and someone takes it? Will they be able to vote multiple times? 

          A: This code is locked after your vote and can only be used once. Even if you lose the paper with the access code before you have voted, the code will automatically time out and cannot be used.

Q: How are the Absentee ballots secured?

          A: The Absentee ballots are counted by optical character scan (the scanner does not track who cast the vote- but it does track who the vote was for.) The scanner also checks for features on that ballot that ensure it is legitimate (not photocopied/fake).

Q: Is there remote access software on the voting machines?

          A: No, the voting machines do not have remote access software. They also do not have connection to the internet, Wifi, or the county network.