2020 Vision: Introduction to Endpoint Testing and WisVote Upgrade

Priority

Timely Attention Required

Date

To

Wisconsin County Clerks
Wisconsin Municipal Clerks
City of Milwaukee Election Commission
Milwaukee County Election Commission

From

Meagan Wolfe, Administrator

1.    Purpose.  This memorandum provides information about two initiatives from the 2020 Vision Election Security plan.  

2.    Background.  As mentioned in the 2020 Vision communication posted on October 23, Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC) staff will be upgrading WisVote and also starting the implementation of an endpoint testing software for all WisVote users.  These two programs will begin in November 2019.  

3.    365 Upgrade.  Throughout 2019 the WEC IT development team has worked behind the scenes to completely upgrade the foundation of WisVote.  This includes upgrading all WisVote software to the latest standards.  This upgrade will have minimal impact on users and user-facing processes will not change.  Please see the attached WisVote Upgrade FAQ for additional information on what’s happening, what will change, and why we are upgrading. 

a)    Timeline. During the upgrade, clerks will not have access to WisVote.  

365 Upgrade Timeline

November 14, 2019 2:00 p.m.    Begin WisVote and MyVote upgrade (both services unavailable)
November 15, 2019 5:00 p.m.    Anticipated date WisVote and MyVote are available again
November 17, 2019    No later than date for upgrade to be completed

b)    Communication.  WEC staff will send a reminder communication the week of November 11. Additionally, once the upgrade is complete, the WEC will send a message to inform clerks that systems are up and available again. 

c)    Training.  No additional training will be required for the upgrade. 

4.    Endpoint Testing.  The WEC will use an endpoint testing software to validate device security starting in January 2020.  This means that every computer connecting to Wisconsin elections systems will be checked to verify its security before access is permitted.  In addition to protecting the network, this process will also allow the WEC to alert users if a problem is detected.  This initiative requires users to install a small application on any computers used to access election systems such as WisVote.  Please see the attached FAQ for additional information on what endpoint testing is and why we are using it. 
a)    Timeline.  A phased implementation of this project is scheduled to begin in November 2019. 

Endpoint Testing Implementation Timeline

November 7, 2019 – November 14, 2019    Phase I: Counties install endpoint testing software
November 15, 2019    Endpoint Testing Webinar
November 22, 2019 – December 20, 2019    Phase II: Municipalities install endpoint testing software
January 28, 2020    WisVote requires endpoint testing to grant access
        
b)    Communication:  While counties and municipalities are not required to install on a specific date, we are providing an implementation schedule to help manage call volume during this time.  WEC staff will email additional information on the software and timelines for when specific counties and municipalities are expected to install the endpoint testing software in the next few days.  
c)    Training: WEC staff will host a webinar on Friday, November 15, 2019, to cover the installation process and answer questions.  All clerks and their IT support staff are welcome to join the webinar. 
Note:  The installation process is very simple and typically takes no longer than 5 minutes.  You or your IT support contact may be comfortable with the install after reviewing the instructions and “IT Staff FAQ” document which will be available on the Learning Center on November 4. 

5.    Questions.  If you have any questions not covered in the attached FAQs, please contact the WEC Help Desk if you have any questions.  Call 608-261-2028 or e-mail elections@wi.gov