SecurityScorecard Alternative for Managing Cybersecurity Risk

7 min readJan 22, 2020


There are many SecurityScorecard alternatives that offer the same core functionality your organization needs to successfully manage first-party, third-party and fourth-party risk.

SecurityScorecard is one of the most well-known security ratings platforms but let’s look at an alternative and see how they stack up. These security ratings providers are promising to reduce cybersecurity risk by continuously monitoring the security posture of any company in the world, instantly and non-intrusively.

If you are new to the space, here’s the general idea.

SecurityScorecard is provider of security ratings that promises to use a proprietary, non-intrusive signal collection process that gathers as much information as possible, normalizes, analyzes and scores using machine learning, then presents a simple, letter-grade rating from A-F.

A security rating is a risk rating akin to a credit score, the higher an organization’s security rating, either by letter grade or number, the better their security posture and the less chance they will suffer a data breach or data leak.

With the average data breach costing $3.92 million in 2019 and the issues with traditional point-in-time cybersecurity risk assessments and vendor risk assessments questionnaires- namely that they are static, subjective and expensive — you can see why security ratings are a good innovation. Security ratings are increasingly adopted by cyber insurers, vendor managers for due diligence and security teams for risk analytics.

When assessing any security provider, here is a short list of features you should look for:

Despite sophisticated marketing, you’ll quickly realise SecurityScorecard is not the only platform that offers these features — and that’s a good thing for you as the purchaser!

Before you commit to SecurityScorecard, consider other solutions such as BitSightor UpGuard. BitSight and SecurityScorecard focus on external cyber risk management, if you are interested to see how BitSight and SecurityScorecard compare, read our analysis here.

UpGuard provides context on first party risk with BreachSight’s data leak detection engine, as well as third-party risk and fourth-party risk with Vendor Risk.

We may be biased but we believe UpGuard does what SecurityScorecard and BitSight do but better, providing real-time threat intelligence and additional capabilities to detect leaked credentials, sensitive data exposure, as well as other cyber threats and malware.

Table of contents

  1. About UpGuard
  2. How UpGuard is different to SecurityScorecard
  3. How UpGuard can help you monitor your vendors’ cybersecurity posture
  4. How UpGuard can help you monitor your organization’s cybersecurity posture
  5. Join NASA, Morningstar and the New York Stock Exchange and use UpGuard to monitor your first and third-party risk
  6. Can’t decide? Think about the problem you are trying to solve

1. About UpGuard

With proprietary, patented data visualization and risk analysis algorithms, UpGuard gives operations and security teams the ability to assess their digital surfaces, network security and digital supply chain to reduce their cybersecurity risk.

UpGuard is headquartered in Mountain View, California with offices in Sydney, Australia. UpGuard also works with insurance companies and underwriters as part of their cyber insurance process.

2. How UpGuard is different to SecurityScorecard

With over 1 billion records secured, the biggest thing that seperates UpGuard from SecurityScorecard and other competitors is that there is very public evidence of our expertise in the field of breach detection.

Data breaches and data leaks are the most significant risk to your business. A breach in customer data has the power to damage your business severely. Just ask, Equifax, Yahoo or one of the other victims of the biggest data breaches.

And you don’t need to take our word for it, our work has been featured in The New York Times, Bloomberg, The Washington Post, Forbes, The New Yorker, Techcrunch and hundreds of other publications.

We’ve helped:

You read all our data breach research pieces here.

We’ll alert you when employee login credentials are compromised or stolen. We scan thousands of known breaches for personally identifiable information (PII).

With over 3 million data breaches found and the introduction of data breach notification laws like CCPA, PIPEDA, GDPR, CPS 234and LGPD, we believe your critical metric should be breaches prevented, not breaches found.

3. How UpGuard can help you monitor your vendors’ cybersecurity posture

UpGuard Vendor Risk can help you find, monitor and track individual vendor’s security performance over time.

We benchmark their performance against their industry, so you can keep vendors accountable and understand which service providers may need to be replaced. Each vendor is rated against 50+ security controls (e.g. vulnerability management, application security and risk of cyber attacks) and given a security rating that is calculated daily, with the option to instantly refresh their security posture in real-time.

While SecurityScorecard and other products also score vendors, they can take days to score a new vendor versus UpGuard’s instant scoring engine.

Aggregate vendor data is pushed into our executive summary feature which outlines your average vendor rating over the last twelve months and your distribution of vendor ratings so you can instantly understand which vendors pose the highest risk.

We even monitor your vendors’ vendors to help you manage fourth-party risk.

4. How UpGuard can help you monitor your organization’s cybersecurity posture

UpGuard BreachSight is like Vendor Risk but for self assessment. It all the monitoring factors of Vendor Risk and additional components for risk management, brand protection, identity breaches, typosquatting and Data Leaks — a proactive breach detection product that automates the detection fo data leaks and breaches of your data on the open and dark web by scouring S3 buckets, public GitHub repos and unsecure RSync and FTP servers.

The key difference between us, SecurityScorecard and SecurityScorecard’s competitors is that UpGuard checks for misconfigurations across the internet footprint, with many important breach vectors are covered, including phishing, ransomware susceptibility (like WannaCry), man-in-the-middle attacks, DNSSEC, vulnerabilities, email spoofing, domain hijacking and DNS issues. The UpGuard methodology has been refined based on the actual data breaches we have discovered and reported to the world.

BitSight and SecurityScorecard generally rely on IP reputation methodology helps catch active malware installations, but that’s only one possible way a data breach can occur. Both companies include additional data, but lack the transparency to prove the efficacy of their scores.

We also integrate with GRC platforms, ticketing systems like ServiceNow, and more.

5. Join NASA, Morningstar and the New York Stock Exchange and use UpGuard to monitor your first and third-party risk

Companies like Intercontinental Exchange, Taylor Fry, The New York Stock Exchange, IAG, First State Super, Akamai, Morningstar and NASA use UpGuard to protect their data, prevent data breaches, monitor for vulnerabilities and avoid malware.

We’re experts in data breaches and data leaks, our research has been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Washington Post, Forbes, Reutersand Techcrunch.

UpGuard Vendor Risk can minimize the amount of time your organization spends managing third-party relationships by automating vendor questionnaires and providing vendor questionnaire templates that map to the NIST Cybersecurity Framework and other best practices. We can help you continuously monitoring your vendors’ security posture over time while benchmarking them against their industry.

Each vendor is rated against 50+ criteria such as presence of SSL and DNSSEC, as well as risk of domain hijacking, man-in-the-middle attacks and email spoofing for phishing.

UpGuard BreachSight can help monitor for DMARC, combat typosquatting, prevent data breaches and data leaks, avoiding regulatory fines and protecting your customer’s trust through cyber security ratings and continuous exposure detection.

If you’d like to see how your organization stacks up, get your free Cyber Security Rating.

Book a demo of the UpGuard platform today.

6. Can’t decide? Think about the problem you are trying to solve

There are lots of products out there with various features and differences between them. BitSight, SecurityScorecard and UpGuard are all capable. But you won’t yet find a silver bullet solution that covers all aspects of managing IT vendor risk.

It may be helpful to ask yourself what problem you are really trying to solve. We at UpGuard have a different view to our peers. We give you the ability to find and close data breaches before they hurt your business and your customers.

If you’d like to learn how, let us know and we’d love the opportunity to show you.

Book a demo today.

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UpGuard — UpGuard combines third-party security ratings, vendor questionnaires, and threat intelligence in a single cyber risk solution.