Guide to elections and voting

Guide to elections and voting

Elections and votes at all federal levels in Switzerland now take place in a digitalised world. Those involved in forming political opinion use the potential of digitalisation to specifically target their campaigns at voters. In this, voters’ rights to privacy and self-determination may come under considerable threat.

Anyone who processes data in the context of elections and votes must be aware that information on political and ideological views is classified as sensitive under both the current and the new Federal Data Protection Act. The latter will come into force on 1 September 2023, shortly before the upcoming general election of Parliament.

In updating their guide in December 2022, the Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner (FDPIC) and the Conference of Swiss Data Protection Commissioners (privatim) want to emphasise the tremendous importance attached to the principle of transparency under data protection law in the context of elections and votes. Voters have a right to understand which digital processing methods and technologies are being used to target them.

Last modification 13.06.2023

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