Study uncovers more security on Web sites

A Brown University analysis of government Web sites found that federal and state sites are taking security and privacy more seriously compared to last year.

The Center for Public Policy at Brown analyzed 1,265 federal and state sites. It found that 34 percent of the sites now have a visible security policy, up from 18 percent last year. And 43 percent have some form of privacy policy, up from 28 percent two years ago.

But the attention to security has led to an increase in restricted areas on government Web sites, some of which require registration and passwords for access. Six percent of government sites surveyed had restricted areas.

The Brown researchers gave high marks to the sites of seven federal organizations: the Labor, Treasury and State departments; Environmental Protection Agency; Federal Communications Commission; General Services Administration's FirstGov; and Social Security Administration. The lowest rankings went to the sites run by the U.S. circuit courts and the Supreme Court.

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