Survey finds little confidence in government's cyber-readiness

Survey finds little confidence in government's cyber-readiness

A survey sponsored by the Business Software Alliance of private-sector IT professionals found little confidence in the government's ability to defend itself against a major attack on its cyberinfrastructure.

In the online survey of 395 IT professionals conducted by Ipsos Public Affairs of Paris, 49 percent of respondents said they thought it is likely that the government would suffer a major cyberattack within the next year. Seventy-two percent said there is a gap between the threat and the government's ability to defend against it. More than half the respondents, 55 percent, said they thought the danger had increased since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11.

The Business Software Alliance, a trade organization of 19 IT companies, released the survey today at the E-Gov Conference in Washington.

Bill Conner, president and chief executive officer of alliance member company Entrust Inc. of Dallas, identified three areas of security government needs to focus on:

  • disclosing security risks and breaches

  • securing content through encryption

  • devoting adequate resources to what has become a critical situation.

  • Alliance president Robert Holleyman said the group has been lobbying the administration and Congress to devote more resources to cybersecurity.

    'We think the right things are being said,' Holleyman said. 'Money is being allocated. But we don't see that the right sense of urgency is being attached to it.'

    About the Author

    William Jackson is a Maryland-based freelance writer.

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