Electronic Data Interchange
Project Scope & Purpose
Project 1622 (P-1622) is the Standard for Voting Equipment Electronic
Data Interchange development effort.
The scope of P-1622 has been revised. The new PAR states the scope is:
This standard specifies electronic data interchange formats for blank ballot distribution, primarily to satisfy the needs of the UOCAVA (Uniform and Overseas
Citizens Assistance in Voting Act) and MOVE (Military and
Overseas Voter Empowerment) Acts. Subsequent standards will address other requirements for electronic data interchange formats used by components of voting systems for exchange of electronic data. This scope does not include return of cast ballots by electronic means.
The following provides additional context on the currently approved scope.
Data interchange specifications for voting systems may include
information used to define and create ballots, as well as
reporting of voting activity and results.
Jurisdictional and geo-political information is included in that
information, as are contest definitions, voter registration,
and voting area (a.k.a., precinct) information.
All such data is included in the scope of this project.
The project scope does not include implementation/vendor
The currently revised purpose is:
This standard defines common data
interchange formats to allow export of blank ballots from voting systems, primarily to facilitate the casting of ballots by military and overseas voters.
The following provides additional context on the purpose.
The long-term purpose of P-1622 is to reach, as nearly as possible,
the ideal state, wherein there exists a common definition
of the data utilized within election systems and the election industry.
This standard would promote interoperability among functional
components, reduce complexity, spur innovation, and provide
greater assurance within election systems. Our initial standardization efforts are focused on the needs of UOCAVA and the MOVE Act. Once our current efforts result in an approved IEEE standard, we may proceed to standardizing additional aspects of electronic data interchange for voting systems.
IEEE Std 1622™-2011 Published January 12, 2012
The IEEE Standards Association published IEEE Std 1622ª-2011, the IEEE Standard for Electronic Distribution of Blank Ballots for Voting Systems. This standard specifies electronic data interchange formats for blank ballot distribution, primarily to assist in satisfying the needs of the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) and Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment (MOVE) Act. Subsequent standards may address other requirements for electronic data interchange formats used by components of voting systems for exchange of electronic data. This scope does not include return of cast ballots by electronic means.
The main change for OASIS EML has been making OASIS EML and the Pew/Google VIP format more compatible. There is now an automated way to convert VIP data into EML, which should really help the states that have used VIP. IEEE Std 1622-2011 also includes more specificity on the need to secure data file, with examples on how to use XML Signature to allow EML documents to be verified as coming unchanged from the appropriate authorities. While VIP is designed for Pew/Google ballot/candidates/polling place discovery online site use, the IEEE Std 1622-2011 has new and enhanced features to support actual Blank Ballot Delivery along with Internet site management that are not available in VIP.
IEEE Std 1622-2011 is made available for free under sponsorship of the IEEE Standards Association because of the IEEE's desire to support this work of national interest and at the specific request of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC).