Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Most Want U.S. to Make Internet Safe

Filed under
Security

Most Americans believe the government should do more to make the Internet safe, but they don't trust the federal institutions that are largely responsible for creating and enforcing laws online, according to a new industry survey.

People who were questioned expressed concerns over threats from identity theft, computer viruses and unwanted "spam" e-mails. But they held low opinions toward Congress and the Federal Trade Commission, which protects consumers against Internet Fraud.

"A lot of times, people get us confused with other agencies," said Lee Peeler, deputy director for the consumer protection bureau at the FTC, which has sued people accused of sending spam and spyware.

The FBI scored more favorably among Internet users in the survey but still lower than technology companies, such as Microsoft Corp. and Dell Inc.

The telephone survey of 1,003 likely voters was funded by the Washington-based Cyber Security Industry Alliance, a trade group that has lobbied the Bush administration to pay greater attention to Internet security. The alliance also has cautioned lawmakers against what it considers unnecessary security laws.

"There are some mixed signals here," said Paul Kurtz, the group's executive director and a former White House cybersecurity official. "There is definitely a desire to see government provide more leadership, but there is some anxiety about what ultimately might come out."

The survey, to be released Wednesday, said 71 percent of people believe Congress needs to pass new laws to keep the Internet safe. But Kurtz said Congress and the Bush administration should do a better job enforcing existing Internet laws against hackers, thieves and vandals and offer incentives for companies to improve security.

"I don't think the public knows what it wants Congress to do, but it wants Congress to do something," said Dan Burton, the senior lobbyist for Entrust Inc., an online security company and member of the trade group. "They don't have a lot of confidence that Congress will do the right thing."

The survey was conducted May 2-9 by Pineda Consulting, with a margin of error of 3 percentage points. It was limited to people who indicated they were almost certain or probably would vote in the next federal election.

By TED BRIDIS
Associated Press

More in Tux Machines

today's howtos

Tizen in Bolivia and India

Security Leftovers

  • Security updates for Wednesday
  • Microsoft says its best not to fiddle with its Windows 10 group policies (that don't work)

    On Monday, we revealed that a security researcher had used a packet sniffer to show that many settings designed to prevent access to the internet were being ignored with connections to a range of third party servers including advertising hubs.

  • What's got a vast attack surface and runs on Linux? Windows Defender, of course
    Google Project Zero's Windows bug-hunter and fuzz-boffin Tavis Ormandy has given the world an insight into how he works so fast: he works on Linux, and with the release of a personal project on GitHub, others can too. Ormandy's project is to port Windows DLLs to Linux for his vuln tests (“So that's how he works so fast!” Penguinistas around the world are saying). Typically self-effacing, Ormandy made this simple announcement on Twitter (to a reception mixing admiration, humour, and horror):
  • Hacked in Translation – from Subtitles to Complete Takeover
    Check Point researchers revealed a new attack vector which threatens millions of users worldwide – attack by subtitles. By crafting malicious subtitle files, which are then downloaded by a victim’s media player, attackers can take complete control over any type of device via vulnerabilities found in many popular streaming platforms, including VLC, Kodi (XBMC), Popcorn-Time and strem.io. We estimate there are approximately 200 million video players and streamers that currently run the vulnerable software, making this one of the most widespread, easily accessed and zero-resistance vulnerability reported in recent years.
  • A Samba remote code execution vulnerability
    Distributors are already shipping the fix; there's also a workaround in the advisory for those who cannot update immediately.

KDE, Qt, GTK and GNOME News

  • KDE Plasma 5.8.7 LTS Desktop Environment Released with over 60 Improvements
    KDE has announced today the release and immediate availability of the seventh maintenance update to the long-term supported KDE Plasma 5.8 desktop environment. KDE Plasma 5.8.7 LTS is now considered the latest stable and most advanced version of the KDE Plasma 5.8 LTS (Long Term Support) desktop environment, which some of you out there are probably using on your favorite GNU/Linux distributions instead of a short-lived branch like KDE Plasma 5.9 or the upcoming KDE Plasma 5.10 release.
  • Summer of Coding!
    After a month of dread and panicking about the fact that Google Summer of Code results are announced in the middle of exam season... I'm happy to say I'll be doing the Rust plugin for KDevelop!
  • Qt 5.9 Release Candidate Available For Testing
  • Qt 5.9.0 RC released
    We have released Qt 5.9.0 RC today. You can update it at the top of your Qt 5.9 beta(4) online installation or do clean installation by using qt online installer. Detailed instructions here: https://wiki.qt.io/How_to_get_snapshot_via_online_installer .
  • The Road to GTK+ 4 Continues, New Milestone Adds Initial OS X and Meson Support
    A new milestone was released recently, GTK+ 3.91.0, which adds quite a bunch of improvements and bug fixes, but also some new APIs and compatibility with other supported operating systems besides those based on the Linux kernel. For example, GTK+ 3.91.0 implements initial support for Apple's macOS platform, which will make it possible to run apps written in GTK+ 4 on OS X.
  • Epiphany Browser Updated for GNOME 3.25.2 with New Shortcuts for Switching Tabs
    Ahead of today's GNOME 3.25.2 desktop environment development release, the team of developers behind the Epiphany web browser have released the second milestone towards the Epiphany 3.26 stable series, due out later this year.