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“Our goal is to help organizations create more secure ecosystems to support a free and fair election process.” ~ Philip Reitinger, GCA’s CEO and President.


Byron V. Acohido discussed the GCA Cybersecurity Toolkit for Elections in his article, NEW TECH: A Couple of Tools That Deserve Wide Use — To Preserve the Integrity of U.S. Elections. The election toolkit addresses the most common cyber risks election officials are vulnerable to which Acohido outlines in his article.

To read Acohido’s full article and see what our President & CEO has to say about election security, please click here.

GCA Press Release

Developed with Funding from Craig Newmark Philanthropies, Toolkit Focuses on Mitigating Most Common and Addressable Cyber Risks


NEW YORK, June 25, 2019 – Today, the Global Cyber Alliance (GCA), in partnership with Craig Newmark Philanthropies and the Center for Internet Security,® Inc. (CIS®), announces a FREE toolkit aimed at providing election authorities with additional easy-to-use solutions that will help mitigate the most common risks to free and fair elections. This toolkit will help government entities responsible for securing local, state and national elections handle daunting security challenges posed by today’s digital world.  Election offices are already working overtime against increasing threats, and the toolkit provides more resources for them to consider. Earlier this year, Craig Newmark Philanthropies contributed a $1.068 million gift to help GCA provide critical cybersecurity protections for media, journalists, election offices and community organizations, and this toolkit is a step in that effort.

“Election infrastructure is critical infrastructure – as vital to daily lives as nuclear power plants or water-filtration facilities,” said Philip Reitinger, President and CEO of GCA. “Election security must be a national and global priority, especially as securing elections is one of the most difficult tasks for a democracy, and the shortage of resources available to many election offices exacerbates the challenge.”

The toolkit is intended to help election offices add to their security program with free operational tools and guidance and has been assembled to help implement the recommendations in A Handbook for Elections Infrastructure Security. In this document, the Center for Internet Security, Inc., working with election offices, election associations and vendors, as well as academia, has established a set of best practices for securing the systems that comprise our election infrastructure.

“The fabric of American democratic society relies on citizen trust in a fair, equitable and secure elections process,” said Craig Newmark. “The GCA Cybersecurity Toolkit offers election officials with proven cybersecurity policies and protections to help prevent elections from being hijacked by those who want to inflict damage on free and open societies.”

Elections are local, but the threats to their integrity are global. More than 99 percent of votes in the U.S. are cast or counted by computer, and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has designated election systems as critical infrastructure.

Today’s cyber risks to elections are multiple and alarming. These risks include the compromise of voter registration data, election infrastructure hacking to alter vote counts, denial-of-service attacks against election offices, phishing campaigns directed at election officials, impersonation of emails from election offices and others, and the viral spread of false information through websites and social media.

“GCA has compiled a number of valuable free resources that will help election officials implement the security best practices outlined in A Handbook for Elections Infrastructure Security,” said John Gilligan, CIS President and CEO. “CIS appreciated the opportunity to collaborate with GCA on the Cybersecurity Toolkit for Elections.”

Election officials now confront an onslaught of cyber threats that inflict serious risks to the integrity of elections and the democratic process. Although these officials work hard to secure election infrastructure, there are thousands of election offices across the country with disparate security resources that will benefit from the GCA Cybersecurity Toolkit.

For more information and to access the toolkit, visit https://gcatoolkit.org/elections.

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About the Global Cyber Alliance

The Global Cyber Alliance (GCA) is an international, cross-sector effort dedicated to eradicating cyber risk and improving our connected world. We achieve our mission by uniting global communities, implementing concrete solutions, and measuring the effect.  Learn more at www.globalcyberalliance.org.

About Craig Newmark Philanthropies

Craig Newmark Philanthropies was created by craigslist founder Craig Newmark to support and connect people and drive broad civic engagement. The organization works to advance people and grassroots organizations that are getting stuff done in areas that include trustworthy journalism, voter protection, gender diversity in technology, and veterans and military families. For more information, please visit: CraigNewmarkPhilanthropies.org.

About the Center for Internet Security

CIS (Center for Internet Security, Inc.) is a forward-thinking, non-profit entity that harnesses the power of a global IT community to safeguard private and public organizations against cyber threats. The CIS Controls™ and CIS Benchmarks™ are the global standard and recognized best practices for securing IT systems and data against the most pervasive attacks. These proven guidelines are continuously refined and verified by a volunteer, global community of experienced IT professionals. Our CIS Hardened Images™ are virtual machine emulations preconfigured to provide secure, on-demand, and scalable computing environments in the cloud. CIS is home to both the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center® (MS-ISAC®), the go-to resource for cyber threat prevention, protection, response, and recovery for U.S. State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial government entities, and the Elections Infrastructure Information Sharing and Analysis Center ® (EI-ISAC®), which supports the cybersecurity needs of U.S. State, Local and Territorial elections offices. To learn more, visit www.cisecurity.org or follow us on Twitter: @CISecurity.

 

 

GCA Press Release

GCA obtains more than $1.5M in additional funds from other sources to support its efforts to eradicate cyber risks


NEW YORK, April 9, 2019 – The Global Cyber Alliance announced a $1.068 million gift from Craig Newmark Philanthropies to help provide critical cybersecurity protections for the media and journalists, and for elections offices and community organizations as they prepare for the 2020 U.S. presidential election.

“To thrive, American democracy needs a safe, trustworthy press and a secure election process,” said Craig Newmark, founder of craigslist and Craig Newmark Philanthropies. “I’m proud to support the Global Cyber Alliance as they help bolster two of the most critical tenets of democracy.”

The gift will go toward developing cybersecurity toolkits that:

  • Protect journalists and media outlets from cyber-attacks that are designed to either manipulate public opinion or expose sources
  • Enable election boards or other bodies to leverage the latest in cybersecurity protections to preserve election integrity and help ensure that all votes are accurately recorded and counted
  • Secure nonprofit community organizations that work to uphold the right to vote

The Global Cyber Alliance toolkits will provide concrete and effective means for these groups to better secure themselves against malicious actors who aim to attack the organizations and people that facilitate our democratic process.

Included in the toolkits, and made available at no cost, will be operational tools, clear guidance, and recommendations, all designed to significantly reduce cyber risk and shore-up defenses. The toolkits will follow the Center for Internet Security’s (CIS) top Critical Controls, a leading global standard for cybersecurity guidelines.

“Protecting the integrity of the free press and our election processes from increasing cybersecurity threats is critical to an open society,” said John Gilligan, President and CEO of the Center for Internet Security. “CIS is proud to contribute to this effort with the Global Cyber Alliance by providing a framework and validated controls that enable improved protections for all.”

In February, the Global Cyber Alliance – in partnership with Mastercard – launched the Cybersecurity Toolkit for Small Business, a free resource that offers operational tools to help small business owners and operators protect themselves, their customers, and their partners from cyber threats. Since its launch, the toolkit has been positively received and is gaining significant attention. This same approach will be extended to provide tailored assistance to the media, election offices, and community organizations.

In addition to the funding from Craig Newmark Philanthropies, the Global Cyber Alliance has received more than $1.5 million in funding from other donors. These contributions will support the organization’s key projects, including its toolkits.

“We thank Craig Newmark Philanthropies and all of our funders for enabling the Global Cyber Alliance to continue to deliver on its mission to make the Internet safer, providing real solutions and ways to foster trustworthy media and free and fair elections,” said Philip Reitinger, President and CEO of the Global Cyber Alliance. “The additional funding from Craig Newmark Philanthropies and others will enable us to tackle and eradicate even more cyber risks.”

Since 2015, the Global Cyber Alliance has maintained a clear focus on building communities and delivering concrete and measurable solutions to online risks. The organization has developed tools and services and has pushed for policy changes that have enabled more than 7,300 companies and government agencies to deploy the Domain-based Message Authentication & Conformance (DMARC) e-mail protocol, which prevents e-mail spoofing and phishing. In 2017, its work contributed to the decision of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to issue a binding directive that requires U.S. government agency email domains to deploy DMARC.

Additionally, in collaboration with IBM and Packet Clearing House (PCH), the Global Cyber Alliance led the development of Quad9, a free domain name protection service that prevents consumers from accessing known malicious websites, such as phishing sites and those compromised with malware. Quad9 operates across six continents, blocks at least 10 million malicious events per day, and is seeing its queries grow weekly by 5 percent in the U.S. and 10 percent across Europe.

About the Global Cyber Alliance

The Global Cyber Alliance (GCA) is an international, cross-sector effort dedicated to eradicating cyber risk and improving our connected world. We achieve our mission by uniting global communities, implementing concrete solutions, and measuring the effect.  Learn more at www.globalcyberalliance.org.

About Craig Newmark Philanthropies

Craig Newmark Philanthropies was created by craigslist founder Craig Newmark to support and connect people and drive broad civic engagement. The organization works to advance people and grassroots organizations that are getting stuff done in areas that include trustworthy journalism, voter protection, gender diversity in technology, and veterans and military families. For more information, please visit: CraigNewmarkPhilanthropies.org.

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Contacts:
Aimée Larsen Kirkpatrick, alkirkpatrick@globalcyberalliance.org, 808.282.9850

Adam Benson, adam@vrge.us, 202.999.9104

Carner Round, CRound@WeberShandwick.com, 347.260.1957

The GCA Cybersecurity Toolkit for Small Business landed a spot in the Spring 2019 Issue of Cybersecurity Quarterly, the official digital publication from CIS.

GCA’s Global Communications Officer, Aimée Larsen Kirkpatrick, wrote a piece about the toolkit in which she discusses the cyber threats small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) face as well as what the toolkit is and how it works to protect SMBs.

Click on the picture below to read the full quarterly, and scroll to pages 18-19 to find Aimée’s article.

Cybersecurity Quarterly

Our partner, the Wealth Mosaic, recently sat down with Terry Wilson, GCA’s Global Partnership Officer, to discuss the GCA Cybersecurity Toolkit for Small Business. Terry gave a general overview of the toolkit and spoke on the following topics:

  • What the starting focus of the toolkit is and how will it be developed.
  • How the toolkit has been structured and aligned.
  • Why the toolkit has been built with a focus on small businesses?
  • How users can discover and access the toolkit.

Watch the full interview by clicking on the picture below.