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Election Security is our number one priority.

Our right to vote is the foundation of our democracy. As the nonpartisan, official election source in the state of California, the California Secretary of State’s Office works around the clock to ensure every vote is safe and secure - that’s why the California Secretary of State’s Office established the Office of Election Cybersecurity.

Through the continuous investment in new tools, systems and infrastructure, the Office of Election Cybersecurity serves California with the sole purpose of keeping every Californian’s vote safe from online interference, especially the spread of mis- and disinformation. The Office of Election Cybersecurity works to make sure every Californian is equipped with the accurate information they need to vote and trust that their vote counts.

Learn More!

 

 
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Check out the ways California has invested in your protection!

Cyber threats to our elections are the new normal. California continues to take critical steps to implement safeguards to further secure our elections, including actively collaborating with multiple federal and state law enforcement agencies to ensure that Californians can register to vote, and vote, with confidence. Here’s how we’re safeguarding our elections:

 

Office of Election Cybersecurity
& Enterprise Risk Management

 
  • The California Legislature appropriated an unprecedented $3 million to combat misinformation and strengthen cybersecurity by establishing the Offices of Elections Cybersecurity and Enterprise Risk Management within the Secretary of State.
  • The Office of Election Cybersecurity has added staff, social media monitoring software and launched a first-ever public education campaign urging voters to be vigilant about misinformation on social media.
  • The Enterprise Risk Management Office coordinates efforts between the Secretary of State and local elections officials to enhance cyber attack prevention capabilities and establish improved cyber incident response.

Election Infrastructure

 
  • California has one of the most strenuous voting system testing and certification programs in the country
  • Any new voting systems in California must receive certification and undergo months of testing, including functional testing, source code review, red team security testing that involves experts trying to “break into” the voting system, and accessibility and volume testing.
  • Since 2016, we’ve conducted agency-wide security assessments and upgraded firewalls, servers, and rolled out additional 24/7 security monitoring tools.
  • California requires that every ballot must either be paper or have a voter-verifiable paper audit trail.
  • Elections officials conduct a manual audit of a random 1% of ballots to ensure vote count machines are accurate.

New Systems

 
  • The 2018-2019 state budget includes $134.3 million for counties to replace aging voting systems.
  • Fully leveraged by a dollar-for-dollar match from counties, this will result in $268.6 million toward improvements for election equipment.
  • California received $34 million from the Elections Assistance Commission as the final disbursement of money from the Help America Vote Act (HAVA).

Voter Education

 
  • The best response to attempts at disruption or misinformation campaigns that discourage voting is voting in our elections.
  • Be vigilant about the election information you consume and share on social media. Make sure that you receive your elections information from local county elections officials and the California Secretary of State’s office.
 

Our Federal and Local Partners