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2nd December 2019

Elections Guidance for Returning Officers

In the run-up to the General Election, the Cabinet Office has coordinated a range of security advice for Returning Officers. Many of these documents will be familiar to you and are publicly available, the Cabinet Office has pulled this together for you in one place for ease of reference.

The Cabinet Office also asks for your support in encouraging candidates in your region to attend local Police forces briefing sessions.


Guidance Guidance Owner Key Contact Description  Audience  Link
Letter from Martin Hewitt NPCC Local Police Points of Contact (see letter Annex) Outlines Police protective security measures available for yourself and candidates.


Includes an appendix of D/Supts who will be the senior police contact points.

Returning Officers  PDF
Election Security for Polling Stations and Counting Officers NaTSO Local Police Points of Contact (see letter Annex) Assists Returning Officers to develop a security plan to avoid major disruption to the election process. Returning Officers


Presiding Officers and poll clerks

Online Security Information DCMS N/A Directs candidates to guidance issued by social media platforms including how to report online abuse. Returning Officers for awareness  PDF
Cyber Security Guidance for Local Authorities NCSC Report and incident: or




Reminders around good cyber security practices for the systems that support the delivery of UK elections. IT departments


Returning Officers for awareness


Electoral administrators

My Digital Footprint CPNI N/A Describes what individual’s digital footprints are and suggests simple ways to manage it. Returning Officers for awareness Link
RESIST Toolkit Government Communications Service N/A Guidance on how to identify a range of different types of disinformation and help you prevent and tackle the spread. Returning Officers for awareness Link