"The operation of unofficial ballot boxes – especially those that are misrepresented as official ballot boxes – is not only misleading to voters but is also a violation of national law, "California Secretary of State Alex Padilla told the Washington Post in an email. “My office is coordinating with local officials to handle the numerous reports of unauthorized ballot boxes. Californians should only use official ballot boxes that have been installed and secured by their polling station. "
Orange County voter registrar Neal Kelley had a brief explanation of what was going on: "It would be like installing a mailbox on the corner – the post office is the one that installs mailboxes."
The Fresno District Republican Party has a list of “safe” ballot boxes for ballot boxes on its website. However, instead of listing official ballot boxes, it lists these illegal ones while trying to suspect the entire postal voting practice.
"CONSERVATIVE VOTER ALERT!", The party presents its list. “President Trump is very concerned about the lack of security in postal voting. Don't run the risk of your vote not being counted. Once your voting slip is in the mail, mark your voting slip completely and take it to one of the safe locations listed below as soon as possible. Make sure your vote counts! "
It's really not clear how it could be safer to put your ballot in a less secure box and then somehow get it off to an official ballot box location, but security isn't the point here. Presumably the goals are to undermine confidence in the elections and cause chaos.
The California Republican Party and the National Republican Congressional Committee have also defended the practice in tweets.
If you live in California, this is where your voting center and Dropbox locations can be found. The real ones.