VVSG Tutorial Narration

By Deborah Edwards,2014-03-26 14:54
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What this means is that these EMC requirements go two ways. standard for configuration management, to provide the framework for the requirements.

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    *VVSG Tutorial Narration

    Voting System Hardware Requirements

    [Slide 1]

    [NARRATOR:] This is the Next Voluntary Voting System Guidelines Training Module covering Core

    Requirements for Voting System Hardware. This VVSG

    Training Module is presented by Dr. Alan Goldfine of the

    National Institute of Standards and Technology’s

    Information Technology Laboratory. The presentation

    includes questions and answers from members of the EAC’s

    Board of Advisors and Standards Board.

    [Slide 2]

     [MR. GOLDFINE:] The three areas that I’m going to

    be talking about are electromagnetic compatibility, EMC,

    other environmental requirements, and also quality

    assurance and configuration management, the last of

    which is really broader than simply hardware since it

    * Certain commercial entities, equipment, or materials may be identified in this presentation in order to describe an experimental procedure or concept adequately.

    Such identification is not intended to imply recommendation or endorsement by the

    National Institute of Standards and Technology, nor is it intended to imply that the

    entities, materials, or equipment are necessarily the best available for the purpose.

Voting System Hardware Requirements

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    involves all of the policies and procedures of vendors

    and so on, but it’s lumped into this category.

    [Slide 3]

     Now when we were doing our work, we had general

    goals. I’ve noticed that most of the other speakers have

    also talked about the goals that were invoked or looked

    towards in their work, and there’s pretty much a lot of

    similarity in the lists. What we were thinking about in

    terms of these areas specifically, that the general

    goals for the next VVSG were to, well, first of all,

    reflect the latest available information. You know,

    things have changed since 2005, 2002, even where the

    2005 requirements originated. We want to, of course,

    reflect the latest available information. This is also

    particularly important in areas like hardware. What

    might be a little bit of a stylistic issue, but we think

    was very important, is that we wanted to have the VVSG

    reference applicable standards, external standards,

    rather than repeating or excerpting text from these

    standards, which was the case in the past. As everybody

    has said, to try to use more precise and testable

    wording whenever possible. This isn’t to say that the

    Voting System Hardware Requirements

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    wording was always or necessarily not precise and testable, but that was the specific goal or a very specific goal for the next generation, and also to clearly separate requirements from testing

    specifications. This sort of had two phases, both of which have been discussed, one of which is the separation into Part 3 of the VVSG of the testing requirements, testing methods, and so on, and the other phase would be to separate entirely from the VVSG, the development of actual or the specification of actual test methods, test scenarios, step-by-step procedures, and so on. There was a little bit of that in previous versions of the voting standards. What we’ve tried to do,

    as much as possible, is to factor that out and redo them in the effort that is now beginning, that I think Mark and John talked about, where NIST will be developing draft conformance tests.

    [Slide 4]

     Now the first area is electromagnetic capability. This is the successor to the electrical, RF, whatever it was called in previous versions, which were pretty much lumped together as simply part of the environmental Voting System Hardware Requirements

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    requirements. Here we’ve separated them out to a

    somewhat greater degree into their own sections, also

    using the currently preferred term in the field, namely

    electromagnetic compatibility.

     What this means is that these EMC requirements go

    two ways. They control first of all how the environment

    of a voting system can affect an electronic voting

    device. This is also called immunity in the specs, and

    conversely how electronic voting devices can affect

    their environment. This is the term emission limits.

    That term is applied to this particular direction.

    [Slide 5]

     Now within electromagnetic compatibility, there

    are three areas, but the three areas are conducted

    compatibility, which basically means, I’m

    oversimplifying in all of this, but basically that means

    the interaction between electronic voting devices with

    the local power supply, you know, the plug in the wall.

     Then there’s radiated compatibility, which you know

    has to do with electrostatic discharge, which really

    talks about sparks, contact with mobile equipment,

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    things bumping into the machines that might cause these types of electrical disturbances.

     And also becoming increasingly important, wireless devices, cell phones, other wireless devices, laptops, whatever, that are in the polling place or in the environment of the polling place, close enough to have effect and so on.

     The third area, telecommunications compatibility, was given a little bit of lip service in some of the previous versions, 2005 and so on, but the requirements there are basically completely new. This deals with basically the telephone line from the polling place to a central tabulator, what possible interactions, interferences, and so on, could specifically occur within this context.

    [Slide 6]

     Now, in the 2002, I include these slides as sort of a roadmap for comparison. In 2002, these issues were dealt with in Volume 1, Sections to, and in Volume 2, Section 4.8.

     In 2005, they were very slightly revised. Some of the numbers changed a little bit, and they were in Voting System Hardware Requirements

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    Volume 1, Sections to, and Volume 2, Section 4.8.

     In the current draft, the next VVSG, they were totally rewritten from 2005. This doesn’t mean that

    they’re totally different. They’re not totally different,

    but they were totally rewritten, and they now constitute Part 1, Sections 6.3.4 to 6.3.6, and Part 3, Sections 5.1.1 to 5.1.3.

    [Slide 7]

     Now the area of other environmental requirements, general build quality, which has some sort of very general page worth of good practices that we sort of gathered together from the overall content and implications of previous versions.

    Durability, and in this case, we’re not just

    talking about durability of equipment, but we added a requirement, I’ll get to just a little bit later on, durability of paper, which we got vibes indicating that that was an issue.

     Maintainability, which is essentially copied, the maintainability of equipment copied pretty much from 2005. Operating temperature and humidity, a lot of the Voting System Hardware Requirements

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    material in this section, is very similar to, but not quite the same as what was in the 2005 spec.

    I guess, by way of explanation, you may be aware,

    several years ago, I think it was probably even prior to the HAVA legislation or around the same time, the IEEE had a project to develop a parallel set of requirements for electronic voting equipment.

    They did a lot of good work, but there were a lot

    of internal dissentions. They never quite voted their document out of committee, but there was good stuff in there, and we borrowed, stole from them, as we felt we could use their material.

    And they made a number of changes in the areas of

    operating temperature and humidity, like a play on words, the operative word is operating. These are temperature and humidity requirements for voting equipment when the voting equipment is actually being used, as opposed to the final bullet which dealt also to some degree with temperature and humidity and similar issues, but concentrating on equipment transportation and storage. Voting System Hardware Requirements

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     One thing in the previous bullet, there never was a humidity requirement for operations. There is now, which again was developed by the IEEE.

    [Slide 8]

     The environmental requirements, well, in the 2002 VSS, Volume 1, Sections 3.2.2, 3.3, 3.4.2, 3.4.4, 3.4.7, and Volume 2, Sections 4.6, 4.7.1, 4.7.2, 4.8.

     In 2005, they were unchanged from 2002 Volume 1, Sections 4.1.2, 4.2, 4.3.2, 4.3.4, 4.3.7, Volume 2, Sections 4.6, 4.7.1, 4.7.2, 4.8.

     [Slide 9]

     And in the next VVSG, which I indicated are enhanced and slightly revised from 2005, we have some new requirements, the general build quality requirements, although those are in spirit extracted from the sense of previous versions.

     There’s a durability of paper requirement in which

    we invoked or which we reference GPO, Government Printing Office paper standards in the hope that this will solve the problems, or at least go some way towards solving paper durability problems.

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     And as I said, there’s a new operating humidity

    requirement developed by the IEEE. These are now Part 1, Sections 6.4.3, 6.4.7, 6.4.3 to 6.4.7, and Part 3, Sections 5.1.4. to 5.1.5

    [Slide 10]

     The third area is quality assurance and

    configuration management. These are requirements on manufacturers to do the following things. For quality assurance, to ensure that the vendors, not the manufacturers, adhere to practices during the development, manufacture, and maintenance of voting systems that build quality in through their systems, and for configuration management, to develop activities and associated practices.

    Remember, these are on vendors that ensure full knowledge and control of the components of their voting systems.

    In the latter bullet, as far as configuration

    management, most of the requirements that are there have to do with tags on the equipment and logs on the experiences, the happenstances, during the development Voting System Hardware Requirements

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    of systems as a whole and individual products that occurred during manufacture.

    [Slide 11]

     Now the 2002 and 2005 specifications in these areas had statements of general goals and good practices, but for one thing, they were, for the most part, not specific to voting systems. You know, they were good practices and so on, and all vendors are expected to do the right thing.

     In particular, there really weren’t any substantive

    verifiable requirements to allow whether it would be the test lab or the certifying authority or whoever it would be, you know, to actually, in a hard and firm sense, verify whether all of this stuff was being accomplished.

    You know, there were procedures for allowable

    visits to the vendor and questions to be asked, but no hard and fast requirements that could be judged on a pass or fail basis, and also more specifically, there were no external references to generally accepted industry standards. It was all, you know, roll your own type thing.

    Voting System Hardware Requirements

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