and Transparency Teleconference Meeting
Thursday, September 19, 2006 at 10:30AM
Allan Eustis, Angela Orbaugh, Bill Burr, David Flater, John Kelsey, John
Wack, Helen Purcell, Nelson Hastings, Patrick Gannon, Rene Peralta, Rick
Kuhn, Ron Rivest, Thelma Allen, Wendy Havens
2) Updated Cryptography Section;
-No modifications to requirements
but put into VVSG 2007 final format
-Security documentation example
3) Discussion of Security and Audit Architecture
4) Discussion of Threat Overview
5) Other Items
Meeting commenced at 10:30 a.m.
- Allan worked at
the polls last week in DC. Everything went smoothly, mainly because
there were no major changes in voting equipment or procedures in DC
from the 2004 elections. Voters Still have choices between OpScan and
Sequoia DREs. Allan sent out his trip report from his experience in
WY. Allan will be going out to Washington state for post election canvassing.
- Plans are to go
to Arizona in November for L & A testing before the election.
- Rene Peralta went
to Washington state for the Logic &Accuracy test. Stated that Seattle
was an eye opener. VVPAT was a special case in WA where most voting
is by mail. The DREs only require VVPAT, and the DREs are only used
for special accessibility. Officials looking for emergency legislation
about machines because there is a possibility of confidentiality being
breached if only 5 to 6 people use a certain machine.
- John Wack worked
the polls in Montgomery and had a very different experience than Allan.
He has sent his comments out to wgvote and Ron Rivest. He will edit
and then share with the rest of the TGDC. Voter access card was just
a small part of the problem. John didn't like that every DRE has modem
that could be connected. Any machine could be made into an accumulator.
All the new equipment, including the electronic poll books, could be
one of the reasons mistakes were made and the voter access cards weren't
- Frederick County,
and other western counties, elected not to phone in results. They decided
not to do counting at the polls which seemed to cause less hassle. John
feels that it might be better to do these things at a central location
where election activities are less hectic.
- John would like
to discuss white papers regarding controversial issues that he wants
to get in front of the TGDC.
- Helen would like
to hear more about the electronic poll books and the poor manufacturing
standards. Helen said that the Arizona primaries went well. Said very
few people used the Sequoia Edge DRE equipment. Most problems caused
by inexperienced poll workers and problems with new equipment. They
did a full hand recount (not certified) of 24 precincts just to have
the experience before a general election. Things were much better than
expected. All were done by hand, nothing was supplied by Sequoia for
the hand count.
- Allan and John
will be attending the AEI-Brookings Election Reform Project on Friday
September 22nd from 8:30am - 12:30pm, located at the Wohlstetter Conference
Center in Washington D.C. Charles Steward of MIT is one of the panelists.
Allan will send around URL for conference. A representative of ESI will
be there and they hope to get some good information about how VVPAT
Section - Nelson Hastings
- Nelson did not
make any changes to the text of the requirements; the main reason that
he wanted this on the agenda was to show the final format (which is
in question). [John - Some things may change on the format, but the
structure should remain the same.] Wanted to point out that short titles
have been added before requirements. We have a couple of "applies
to" fields, as well as a test reference field.
- Ron: Looks nice.
Also source and impact fields? [John W: Source is basically a reference
for the requirement. Impact is an internal field saying what is the
impact of this requirement to existing technology and existing systems.
Not sure this field is necessary.]
- John W: Usage
of glossary terms and how they should be used in the text. In the "requirements"
text we should probably link each use of the glossary term to the glossary.
Consistency of usage needs to be clear.
- Nelson: The other
thing is about security documentation. Wanted to look at a couple of
examples in the cryptography requirements of documentation requirements
and see if they meet Ron's expectation. [Ron: Do we have a definition
for security services? Nelson - Section 2.1. We need to make sure how
those services get used are also discussed. And also about encryption
security cards.] Nelson would like Ron to look at this section and let
him know if there is anything he feels is not covered in the documentation
- Ron: We need to
think about what we want the vendor to provide, everything from the
declared security objective, policies for the machine, how to configure,
what security mechanisms there are and how they work, and then to justify
to the evaluator the architecture and the rationale for the machine.
- Nelson: If it
is determined that the security documentation provided in the cryptography
document meets our needs, should they be kept in that section or pulled
out separately. [Ron: A security document as part of the evaluation
package is important. Ron's opinion is that all the security regulations
should be done in a larger combined document and refer to other things
as necessary. We need to give guidance to vendors about what can be
expected as far as structure of the documentation. Not just a list of
items that need to be there.]
- John K: Should
there be a section regarding the security documentation with links throughout
the document where it states that it imposes this additional documentation?
Sections that state what the requirements for the technical documentation
are? Throughout should there be statements that say in order to meet
the security documentation this is what you need to do? [Ron feels that
having the security documentation together might be the right way, but
this is open for discussion.]
- David F: In the
outline that we're following, within the chapter on user documentation,
there is a distinct section on security documentation requirements where
these types of documentation would go. [Ron: User documentation means
poll workers, voters, and election officials? David: It means the customer.
However it is also included in the technical data package.] With the
outline, all requirements could be moved into the chapter on user documentation,
and they could be cross referenced with the security requirements section.
The security documentation would be a chapter within the user documentation.
[Ron: There may be other things regarding security that the user doesn't
see, having to do with the internal architecture and the structure of
the machine.] Maybe there should be a separate section for the TDP.
[John K: Seems like these would be two completely different things for
the users and the test labs.] [Ron: There needs to be evaluation to
make sure the user is being adequately instructed.]
- [John W: As far
at the documentation that should go to the labs, was there a questionnaire?
] Ron will dig it up and revisit it as a checklist for the vendors,
making sure they extend the level of detail we're looking for. The vendor
needs to know that the default for the system is insecure and it will
only be deemed secured when it goes through all the requirements. The
burden of proof is on the vendor for security. Ron will turn this into
a better organized list. Maybe we can all generate questions we'd like
the vendor to answer.
and Threat Tree
- John K sent around
something. We've been looking at outline to see what the components
met. We weren't sure what we needed to write, so he took a stab and
that is what he sent out. Part 1 is a draft threat overview.
- We have the Brennan
Center report. Is the vision here that we need more into material?
- JK: We have two
sections, the threat overview and the threat tree that are here to set
the tone of how we're thinking about the threats at a high level. The
big thing John wanted to do with the overview was describe the type
of categories of threat we cared about, and how we think about these
attacks; what we mean when we talk about an attack on a voting system,
who are potential attackers and what kind of budget they have. [Ron:
This is just informational for the reader, cluing in the vendor about
how each of these threats can be dealt with.] The overview is not normative,
neither is the threat tree. There are no "shalls" in the threat
tree. [Ron: The benefit is to educate the reader about why the security
requirements are there. Some of the requirements may link back to this.]
John doesn't have a good intuition how this is all going to fit together.
- John Wack thinks
the introduction of the VVSG would be a good place to put controversial
topics because it would be more accessible. This may be a good place
to discuss these threats. We at NIST should talk about this before going
- Ron: In terms
of writing various security requirements, do we have a policy for tying
them to particular threats or providing a justification for the requirements
or to the higher level security? John Kelsey does not see the logic
of tying each requirement to a threat. John Wack thinks that it might
be a good idea to have the introduction state something about how the
requirements might prevent certain groups or types of threats. In the
discussion field we might be able to do traceability. Thinks doing the
introduction this way would be very useful.
- David F: The same
things we're seeing here, could be used on the requirements for the
security documentation to require vendors to explain how your system
prevents each of these classes of attacks.
- Ron: We just
want to make sure that vendors explicitly considers voter attempts to
subvert his own privacy.
- John K: It's worthwhile
to point out these classes of attacks and to go into a little more detail
in the attack tree, but concerned about requirements that say demonstrate
how you prevent the broad attack of subverting the election. Multiple
requirements you want to uphold because they prevent multiple kinds
Security and Audit
- John K: I don't
feel like I know what we need to accomplish with this section. This
is just a first take to see how others felt. We need to discuss architectural
profiles on the different type of voting systems to make sure each piece
of the voting process can be audited.
- David F: One of
the first questions to answer is, which kinds of auditing are you concerned
with? Not only that the recorded votes were counted correctly but also
that the votes that were intended to be cast by the voter were recorded
correctly. Some of the specific designs we have only accomplishes one
or the other. If you're auditing for all the above, then that will determine
your responses. [John K: should audit for the full correctness of the
system, so that final vote totals are substantially correct.] Where
does ballot accounting fit in? [John K. would expect that to go in this
section. They assumed that the poll books were part of the auditing
trail. It was disconcerting to see that both the electronic poll books
and DREs were from same manufacturer.]
- John Wack: The
electronic poll book that he used wrote to the smart card that activated
the ballot. [Ron - they're called voter activation systems]
- This section is
all about auditing even though we divided it into a separate section.
Thought the audit section should be about audit longs and audit trails
and how to accomplish the auditing technically.
- David F.: In the
outline for VVSG 07, there's one major chapter regarding general requirements
that seem to apply globally throughout the voting process. Following
is another large division of requirements by activity that goes chronologically
throughout election day with requirements that are more specific to
the individual activity than the voting process.
- Ron: You need
to divy up type of audit material. You need to organize the auditing
section by the information you want to have available after the election
to do any kind of checking. [John K: It's not enough to specify the
information has to be produced, you also have to specify how its going
to be used and make sure the architecture of the voting system supports
that.] The high level goal here is to make sure we have some kind of
coherent organization discussing the various kinds of auditing that
can be done, what the information is that is produced, what the procedures
are, how the audit information gets protected.
- John K: We don't
have to specify what the procedures are, but we do have to specify that
what they do, like audit this against this.
- John W: In the
threat overview, you'd have to reference various type of audits as addressing
some of the threats but was wondering about a section that says these
requirements exists to support the following types of audits.
- Possibly on VVPAT.
Privacy requirement in effect won't permit paper rolls. New VVPAT requirements
- Possibly another
on 8022 wireless.
- John Kelsey has
concerns that asking someone to do white papers at this point would
be a bit much as everyone already has enough deadlines.
- Group should come
up with a list of major controversial items. This will be a dynamic
Next scheduled meeting;
Tuesday, October 3rd at 10:30-11:30
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