All 26 Declared Presidential Candidates Earn Top Marks for Patch Management

19 of 26 Receive A Grades for Email Security

VIENNA, VA, June 25, 2019 – The list of declared Presidential candidates is long and diverse but all seem to be on the same page when it comes to their cybersecurity protections, according to new research from Black Kite, the only provider that assesses and prioritizes the cyber risk of any organization within 60 seconds.  

Black Kite ran its 60-second Rapid Cyber Risk Scorecard for all of the 26 declared U.S. Presidential candidates. Black Kite researchers were able to review 10 cyber risk categories and more than 250 control items to produce a risk score that can be instantly used to evaluate candidate cyber defenses.

The average cyber risk score of B+ across all candidates shows a concerted focus on reducing cyber risk. Several areas stand out including software patch management and Domain Name System (DNS) security where every candidate received A’s.

“It is great to see that lessons have been learned from past election cycles,” said Mohamoud Jibrell, CEO of Black Kite. “Cyber-attacks remain a risk, however, the actions taken by these candidates show that they are focused on deploying all available cybersecurity protections.”

Two areas of opportunity for the candidates are email security and fraudulent domains.  Three candidates scored Cs for email security and seven received Cs for fraudulent domains. Low email security scores are most likely attributed to not deploying the Domain-based Message Authentication and Conformance (DMARC) email protocol, a critical tool to preventing the spoofing of email addresses. A low score for fraudulent domains shows that a candidate has not registered a wide variety of domain names to prevent an imposter from creating a fake website.

Candidates could face additional risk from third-parties that have access to their networks or data. A hacked vendor can easily impact all of their customers. The research announced today did not evaluate third-party risk as that requires specific information from each candidate.

Of particular note was the Web rankings for the candidates. The Web ranking score does not indicate cyber risk but does provide a glimpse into a candidate’s online popularity. The better the score, the more web traffic to that candidate’s site.

Web ranking scores included:

  • President Trump – A
  • Senator Elizabeth Warren – A
  • Senator Bernie Sanders – A
  • Pete Buttigieg — B
  • Senator Kamala Harris – B
  • Joe Biden – C
  • Senator Cory Booker — C
  • Beto O’Rourke — C

About Black Kite

Black Kite enables enterprises to assess, prioritize, and address the third-party cyber risk of any company, anywhere within 60 seconds. Using easy-to-understand scorecards, we provide standards-based letter grades on various risk categories, along with data on how to mitigate each risk in priority order. Black Kite provides the speed, standards, and substance needed to combat the newest risks and threats facing organizations today. 

Black Kite cyber risk scoring methodology is based MITRE standards

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