The FEC's Voting System Standards in PDF format (Joseph Lorenzo Hall)

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Voting System Standards


Note: Joseph Lorenzo Hall has a long history of despising Micro$oft's Word Document (DOC) format and translated this page from the FEC's website (here, has been moved to here) on 8 June 2004. It is too bad that such an important standards-setting body such as the FEC would choose to release its final set of voting standards in a proprietary, non-open format.

The HTML was translated into Markdown syntax using Aaron Swartz's html2text python script, then the individual DOC files were translated to PDF using Adobe Acrobat and finally, this HTML page was recreated using Markdown.

This page and the PDFs are archived here (tar.gz) and here (.zip).

UPDATE [2007-10-31T09:13:41]: I have added the original DOC files to this archive here.


On April 30, 2002, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) approved the Voting Systems Standards for release and publication. This document represents a three year effort by the FEC, it's Office of Election Administration, and election officials and administrators throughout the country. The Standards ensure that election equipment certified for purchase by participating states will be accurate, reliable, and dependable.

Drafts of this document have been released for public comment twice, generating significant public interest and comment from a variety of interests including vendors, election officials, academics, technical experts, special interest advocacy groups, and concerned citizens. Many sections of the Standards have been revised to reflect issues raised by these comments.

The Standards are divided into two volumes. Volume I provides performance standards and functional capabilities for voting systems that are seeking qualification. Volume II addresses documentation required to be submitted by the vendor prior to testing, the tests conducted by the Independent Test Authorities (ITA's), and the products generated by the test process. Also included is an Overview that discusses the particular content of each Volume, and provides a background of the Standards process.

Documents labeled [PDF] are provided in Adobe PDF file format; Adobe Acrobat Reader is available from Adobe.

VSS Sections

For public comments on the Draft Voting System Standards and other earlier documents visit the Draft Voting System Standards page.