Today the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) voted to adopt the federal Voluntary Voting System Guidelines (VVSG) 2.0. We recognize that the VVSG 2.0 represents many significant steps forward to improve the security, resiliency and accessibility of federally certified voting systems. We are pleased that the federal guidelines will finally ensure software independence in certified voting systems, a core principle for election security which was first included in a proposed VVSG draft in 2008. 

Nevertheless, we are profoundly disappointed the EAC acted outside of the legally mandated process to amend the VVSG 2.0 and materially weaken critical security provisions. 

The EAC’s decision to make substantive security changes to the VVSG 2.0 draft, outside of the legally mandated process, is not just legally troubling, it is particularly tone-deaf.  Transparency, accountability and trust in our election processes and systems are principles the EAC should be advancing, not degrading. 

There are valid concerns that the EAC amended requirements addressing the inclusion of wireless networking hardware and other security features as a result of non-public meetings with voting system vendors. Free Speech For People will continue to act in the interest of the public to uncover any improper industry contacts that may have led to the EAC’s last-minute changes, and to hold the EAC accountable.

The Washington Post recently published a new piece about the VVSG 2.0. Read it here.