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Do We Trust Governments to Effectively Regulate Privacy? [Ask Security Professionals]

Do We Trust Governments to Effectively Regulate Privacy? [Ask Security Professionals]

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September 4, 2019 | Eva Hanscom

Over the last several years, we’ve seen countless private organizations exploit and not properly protect the personal information of their users. As we get deeper and deeper into the digital transformation in all aspects of our lives, protecting our private data will become increasingly difficult. But who do we look for to enforce that protection? Many analysts believe strict regulation is on the horizon, but the jury is still out on whether our government officials appropriately understand the ever-evolving cybersecurity landscape.

80% of security professionals say we need more security legislation

At Black Hat USA 2019, Venafi evaluated the opinions of over 380 convention attendees on security and privacy regulation. According to the survey results, 80% of security professionals agree that more security and privacy legislation is needed, especially for social media organizations that store personal data. However, nearly the same number of respondents (82%) don’t believe their elected officials understand cyber risks well enough to develop and enact effective security regulation.

82% unsure if elected officials know how 

“There’s a global wave of legislators, regulators and law enforcement officials proposing controversial surveillance laws such as government mandated encryption backdoors,” said Kevin Bocek, vice president of security strategy and threat intelligence at Venafi. “However, security professionals lack confidence in politicians’ abilities to improve cybersecurity given the unabated flood of government breaches in the U.S. and around the world.”

How valuable are machine identities on the dark web? See the report.

Cyber security professionals tend to have strong opinions about privacy and regulation. Additional findings from the survey include:


  • 93% do not trust social media organizations to protect their personally identifiable information.
  • 82% do not trust the government to protect their personally identifiable information.
  • 80% of respondents say government officials do not understand the cyber risks targeting digital infrastructure.

Ultimately regulation may be necessary, but our elected officials require more cybersecurity education. Bocek concludes: “The results of our survey send a clear message that governments must improve their cybersecurity fluency in order to make a meaningful impact and help our frontline defenders protect the global economy, freedoms and privacy.”


Are you concerned encryption backdoors will weaken election infrastructure and the global economy?

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About the author

Eva Hanscom
Eva Hanscom

Eva is Public Relations Manager at Venafi. She is passionate about educating the global marketplace about infosec and machine-identity issues, and in 2018 grew Venafi's global coverage by 45%.

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