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EAC Prepares to Launch Voting System Test Lab Program PDF  | Print |  Email
By EAC Media Release   
February 13, 2007
The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) last week heard testimony during a public meeting about the launch of its accreditation program for laboratories that test voting systems, including discussion about the first two labs that will be considered for accreditation. The Commission also voted to stop accepting applications or additional information related to pending applications to its interim test laboratory accreditation program, effective March 5, 2007, citing the onset of the full accreditation program.


"The interim accreditation program was a temporary one to ensure there was no gap in service," said EAC Chair Donetta Davidson. "Now that we have received the first set of recommended labs, the interim program is no longer necessary, and we will implement the full program just as the Help America Vote Act intended.


"Accrediting the test laboratories that will evaluate our voting systems is a huge responsibility, one that the federal government is assuming for the very first time. We take this responsibility very seriously, and I assure you the process will be rigorous, strenuous, and thorough."

Voting System Test Laboratory Accreditation Program


The Help America Vote Act (HAVA) of 2002 mandates that EAC assume federal responsibility for accrediting voting system test laboratories and for certifying voting equipment. The full accreditation program follows the procedures mandated by HAVA. This includes review of the labs by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), through its National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP). NIST then provides recommendations to the EAC regarding laboratory accreditation.


iBeta Quality Assurance and SysTest Labs were the first two labs recommended by NIST to test voting systems against both the 2002 Voting System Standards and the 2005 Voluntary Voting System Guidelines. EAC is conducting further review of the recommended labs to address non-technical issues such as conflict of interest policies, organizational structure, and recordkeeping protocols. After the EAC review, the Commission will vote regarding full accreditation. For more information about the NIST/NVLAP accreditation process and to view related documents, visit


Interim Voting System Test Laboratory Accreditation Program


EAC's interim laboratory accreditation program was put in place until NIST delivered its first list of recommended labs for the full accreditation program, a process mandated by HAVA.  Under the interim program, test laboratories were accredited to test voting systems only to the standards put in place in 2002, not the 2005 Voluntary Voting System Guidelines.  SysTest Labs and Wyle Laboratories received interim accreditation. Ciber Inc. applied for interim accreditation and has until March 5, 2007, to submit all of the information requested by EAC.  If Ciber Inc. meets all of the requirements by this date, the Commission will make a final determination regarding its interim accreditation. Information about the interim accreditation program and the labs is available at




EAC's Voting System Certification and Laboratory Accreditation Program represents the first time the federal government will accredit test laboratories and certify voting equipment. In the past, these functions were performed on a volunteer basis by the National Association of State Election Directors (NASED), which did not receive any federal funds. Participation in EAC's program is voluntary. However, approximately 39 states required NASED certification in the past, and EAC anticipates these states will now require the federal certification EAC will provide.

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