Venafi Survey: Majority of Security Pros Say Government Officials Should Complete Basic Cyber Security Training

Sixty-six percent believe governments should not force tech companies
to grant access to encrypted user data

the leading provider of machine identity protection, today announced the
results of a survey of 515 IT security professionals’ views on the cyber
security literacy of government officials. The survey was conducted
August 4-9, 2018, at the Black
conference in Las Vegas.

According to the survey, eighty-eight percent of respondents believe all
government officials should be required to complete a basic cyber
security training course. In addition, sixty-six percent believe
governments should not be able to force technology companies to grant
them access to encrypted user data.

“Over the last several months, we’ve seen government officials from
across the globe propose dangerous surveillance laws and protocols,”
says Jeff Hudson, CEO of Venafi. “For example, the Five Eyes
international alliance has been consistently pushing
for mandated encryption backdoors
into private technology devices.
They don’t seem to realize that the same encryption technology that
creates barriers for law enforcement is also used to protect all types
of classified intelligence and other highly sensitive government data. A
backdoor sounds great until a malicious actor gets the key, which they
always do.”

Additional findings from the survey include:

  • Nearly two-thirds (sixty-five percent) believe government-mandated
    encryption backdoors weaken the security of election data.
  • Only a third (thirty-three percent) believe government officials
    understand the cyber risks targeting physical infrastructure.
  • Only thirty-seven percent believe government officials understand the
    cyber risks targeting digital infrastructure.

IT professionals may be skeptical about backdoors because government
officials may misrepresent the scope of the problem. The FBI has claimed
encryption is a ‘major
public safety issue
’ because law enforcement officials are
frequently locked out of devices connected to criminal activities.

Additional Resources:

Venafi Research: Do Government Officials Need Cyber Security Training?

Venafi Black Hat Survey – Cyber Literacy

About Venafi

Venafi is the cybersecurity market leader in machine identity
protection, securing connections and communications between machines.
Venafi protects machine identity types by orchestrating cryptographic
keys and digital certificates for SSL/TLS, IoT, mobile and SSH. Venafi
provides global visibility of machine identities and the risks
associated with them for the extended enterprise—on premises, mobile,
virtual, cloud and IoT—at machine speed and scale. Venafi puts this
intelligence into action with automated remediation that reduces the
security and availability risks connected with weak or compromised
machine identities while safeguarding the flow of information to trusted
machines and preventing communication with machines that are not trusted.

With over 30 patents, Venafi delivers innovative solutions for the
world’s most demanding, security-conscious Global 5000 organizations,
including the top five U.S. health insurers; the top five U.S. airlines;
four of the top five U.S., U.K., Australian and South African banks; and
four of the top five U.S. retailers. For more information, visit:


Shelley Boose

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