Elections Nova Scotia

E-Ballot for Early Voting

All in-person early voting in Nova Scotia uses the e-Ballot system that allows voters to select the candidate of their choice on a secure tablet. Elections Nova Scotia has developed the safe e-Balloting system and is confident in the integrity of this innovative voting method.

E-Ballot Voting Process

All early voting locations (returning office continuous, community and advance polls) are technology enabled with Elections Nova Scotia’s proprietary e-Ballot System (system). This system is used at early voting locations after all candidates have been nominated.

Before election day, voters may vote at any early voting location.

When a voter enters an early voting location, a presiding officer will:

1. Register the voter, producing a Certificate to Vote.

2. Provide the voter with their ballot envelope.

3. Instruct the voter on the voting process.

The voter will then:

5. Proceed to the voting screen.

6. Scan the barcode on the ballot envelope, using the scanner provided.

7. Touch the circle beside the name of the candidate chosen on the tablet provided.

8. Confirm their selection.

9. Cast their digital vote.

10. Retrieve the ballot receipt produced by the printer provided.

11. Place their ballot receipt in their ballot envelope.

12. Proceed to the ballot box.

13. Retrieve a seal from the Information Officer.

14. Drop their ballot envelope, containing their ballot receipt, into the ballot box.

15. Exit the voting location.


Voters that require assistance, and who want to vote at an early voting location can:

  • Bring a friend or family member to assist them.
  • Request the assistance of one of the election workers.
  • Use the e-Ballot system accessibility template for tactile assistance.
  • Enlarge the size of the ballot content on the screen of the tablet for better visibility.

Counting Process

While the e-Ballot System records the voters’ vote as digital ballots are cast, the results are not tallied until the close of polls on election day. The returning officer will complete the necessary steps in Elections Nova Scotia’s proprietary Election Management System to validate the digital votes. Once validated, the system will tally the votes to produce the transmittal report.

The transmittal report contains the total number of digital votes cast for each candidate as well as the digital votes that were rejected (overvotes or undervotes).

System Security and Integrity

The e-Ballot System (system) was built with a focus on security and integrity.

The system uses an isolated hard-wired network and encrypted connection. Continuous automated monitoring procedures will detect any unwanted activity, should it occur. Every e-Ballot is encrypted, and its contents validated before it is cast.

The ballot receipt is produced when a digital vote is cast in the system, and a hardcopy printout will be checked by the voter before they place it in the envelope and drop it in the ballot box.

Before the digital votes are tallied on election night, the system runs through a rigorous validation process of each cast ballot and compares the count with the daily reconciliation count. After the ENS team has confirmed the integrity, the tally will be confirmed, and results reported.

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