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Election Supporting Technology Evaluation Program (ESTEP)

Thursday, March 14, 2024

What is ESTEP? 

Under the authority of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA), the EAC began exploring the need to develop federal standards for election-supporting technologies in 2021. To achieve this goal, the EAC developed the Election Supporting Technology Evaluation Program (ESTEP), responsible for the creation of draft standards that can be used by voting system test laboratories (VSTLs) or other testing partners, creation of program manuals, administration of pilot programs and test campaigns, and reporting on the results of these campaigns. This program was formally established in 2022, through employing its first Director, and received congressional funding for the development of a full program in 2023. This additional funding permitted the EAC to conduct the Voluntary Electronic Poll Book Pilot Program, contract with VSTLs to conduct testing, employ four Election Technology Specialists to oversee program activities, and purchase additional program resources. On December 4, 2023, EAC Commissioners voted unanimously to formally adopt ESTEP as a permanent part of the agency. ESTEP aims to establish requirements and guidelines specific to election technologies that are not covered under the Voluntary Voting System Guidelines (VVSG), which includes electronic poll books (EPBs), electronic ballot delivery (EBD) systems, election night reporting (ENR) systems, and voter registration (VR) portals and databases.  


Questions? Please Contact:  

Election Supporting Technology Evaluation Program 
[email protected]  

Featured ESTEP Resources

  • ESTEP Manuals and Forms

    Participation is voluntary, but if manufacturers decide to participate, then they must conform to these procedural requirements.

  • Electronic Poll Books (EPBs)

    Equipment used to access digital voter registration records for their representative jurisdiction.

  • Electronic Ballot Delivery (EBD) Systems

    Ballot delivery systems are used for the electronic delivery of ballot and voter information packets.

  • Election Night Report (ENR) Systems

    Election night reporting software facilitates the collection, aggregation, reporting, and secure sharing of accurate election results to the public in real-time, usually through an official website.

  • Voter Registration (VR) Portals and Databases

    A combination of either hardware, software, or firmware, materials, and documentation used to automate the process of voter registration and secure voter information within a county, state, or election jurisdiction by election administrators.