2013 HONOR ROLL
Honor Roll Recipients
Online Trust Alliance Announces
Top-Ranked Websites for Security, Privacy and Consumer Protection
Twitter & American Greetings Garner Top Honors in 2013
Join The Webinar Briefing June 12
IL (June 5, 2013) – Internet Retailer Conference & Expo –
The Online Trust Alliance
(OTA), a nonprofit organization with a mission to enhance online trust
by collaboratively establishing best practices for privacy and security,
today released the 2013 Online Trust Honor Roll report, revealing the top
scoring websites recognized for excellence in privacy, security and consumer
OTA completed comprehensive audits, reviewing more than 750 domains and
privacy policies, 10,000+ web pages and over 500 million emails associated
with the Internet Retailer 500 (IR500), Federal Deposit Insurance
Corporation (FDIC 100), and Top 50 Social and Federal Government sites. The
composite analysis focused on three major areas: Domain, Brand & Consumer
Protection; Site, Server & Infrastructure Security; and Data Protection &
Privacy. Combined, over a dozen attributes were reviewed for the 2013
report. Details are posted at
Thirty-two percent of the companies audited made the Honor Roll. Twitter had
the top overall composite score and American Greetings achieved the number
one ranking of all internet retailers. These companies have demonstrated
a commitment to voluntary best practices, consumer protection and
self-regulation. In addition to American Greetings, Amazon, Big Fish Games,
Bike Bandit, Books-A-Million, iHerb, JackThreads, Levenger Co., LivingSocial,
Netflix, Ralph Lauren and Rock Auto qualified for the top 10 eCommerce sites
(two sites tied for two rankings are included in the top 10).
"Twitter is pleased to have earned the top score on the OTA Honor Roll. By
supporting Always-On-SSL, Do Not Track, DMARC, and most recently login
verification, we aim to keep users connected securely to everything
happening in the global town square," said Bob Lord, director of information
"Through an ongoing process we have evolved our data security and
privacy practices from one of compliance to one of stewardship," said Joseph
Yanoska, vice president, technology, American Greetings. "We're honored by
the recognition the OTA has given us, and are committed to supporting their
efforts. We share and embrace their approach to security and hope that it
results in a higher level of trust from our customer base."
Social gaming and dating sites (Social 50) outpaced both the IR500 and FDIC
100 2:1 in percent of companies qualifying for the Honor Roll. This
disparity is attributed to the agility of sites within this segment, their
recognition of the importance of data security and privacy and their
infrastructure. Many banks and commerce sites have more complex legacy
sites and data centers which impede their ability to quickly adopt many of
the best practices.
“The 2013 report demonstrates how business leaders have recognized the need
to move from compliance to stewardship. This is critical to consumer trust
and to help stem the call for more regulation. The Online Trust Honor Roll
report provides prescriptive and actionable guidance for businesses to move
from a state of inaction to one which will enhance consumer protection,”
said Craig Spiezle, president and executive director of OTA.
Key Findings of the 2013 Online Trust Honor Roll:
32% of companies qualified for the 2013 Online
Trust Honor Roll, with the overall top score being awarded to Twitter.
Though 26% of the Internet Retailer 500 made the
Honor Roll, a slight improvement over 2012, 53% are still failing to
achieve passing scores in one or more categories, unnecessarily exposing
users to security, privacy and social engineering threats.
FDIC member banks demonstrated significant
improvements over last year with 25% making the Honor Roll. Of those
that did not qualify, 71% received failing grades in one or more
categories, largely attributed to inadequate email and domain protection
or outdated privacy policies with inconsistencies observed between their
written policy and actual data collection observed.
The banking sector led in the adoption of Extended
Validation SSL (EV SSL) certificates, at 60%, while overall worldwide
growth of EV SSL certificates grew 28% over 2012.
Top U.S. Government (Federal 50) sites made
improvements across all sectors, achieving 88% support of DNSSEC, yet
significantly lagged in helping protect consumers from forged and
deceptive email and securing their sites from known vulnerabilities.
Only 20% adopted both SPF and DKIM and one third received failing grades
for their SSL server security.
Adoption of email authentication to counter forged
and malicious email experienced double-digit growth across three of the
four segments with IR100 adoption of both SPF and DKIM jumping 20% to
Privacy scores climbed in all categories representing
the importance of transparency and controls on sharing with third
parties. OTA member companies led all segments with an average of 83.7%
increasing 5 points over 2012.
“Being named to the 2013 Online Trust Honor Roll is a
significant achievement. The adoption of best practices not only helps to
protect customers, it also builds brand integrity, enhances click through
and reduces the risk of shopping cart abandonment,” said Spiezle.
Webinar Briefing: OTA will host an online briefing on
Wednesday, June 12 at 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. PDT.
To attend, register at:
About The Online Trust Alliance (OTA)
The Online Trust Alliance (OTA) is a non-profit with the
mission to enhance online trust, while promoting innovation and the vitality
of the internet. Our goal is to help educate businesses, policy makers and
stakeholders while developing and advancing best practices and tools to
enhance the protection of users' security, privacy and identity. OTA
supports collaborative public-private partnerships, benchmark reporting,
meaningful self-regulation and data stewardship.
Revised June 6, 2013