Unisys Security Index Shows Most Americans Worry about Data Breaches but Disagree about the Need for Private Companies to Notify Government about Cyber Attacks

Most U.S. respondents are concerned about breaches at banks, government agencies and hospitals; they are split over whether new laws should require private organizations to disclose attacks to government

Blue Bell, PA  (Profitable.com)  According to new research conducted by Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS), a majority of Americans are concerned about data breaches involving large organizations, but are evenly mixed on whether legislation should require private businesses to share cyber attack information with the government.

Results from the Unisys Security Index, which regularly surveys more than 1,000 Americans on various areas of security concern, showed high levels of concern about data breaches among Americans. Respondents to the survey said they were most worried about data breaches hitting their banks and financial institutions, with two-thirds (67 percent) reporting concern. A majority of Americans surveyed also reported concern about data breaches involving government agencies (62 percent), health organizations (60 percent) and telecommunications and Internet service providers (59 percent).

Findings released last month from the same survey also showed most Americans harbor some level of concern about identity theft (83 percent) and credit card fraud (82 percent), both of which can arise from breaches at large organizations.

Despite these concerns, Americans polled were split on whether federal legislation to strengthen the country’s cybersecurity defenses should require organizations like banks, utilities and healthcare organizations to disclose breaches to the government.

Roughly half (48 percent) of respondents said they do not believe private businesses should be forced to disclose and share cyber attack intelligence, but a similar proportion (46 percent) said they think Congress should pass cybersecurity legislation mandating that the private sector share cyber-attack information with the government.

The poll was undertaken in March, via 1,006 telephone interviews, approximately a month before the controversial Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) was passed by the United States House of Representatives. CISPA is not expected to be considered by the Senate this year, and many point to a lack of consensus on its information-sharing requirements as the reason.

“Americans clearly see a need for stronger methods to prevent cyberattacks, and many see a natural role for government in that process, but they differ on precisely how government and the private sector should interact in that regard,” said Steve Vinsik, vice president of enterprise security for Unisys. “Regardless of where the legislation ends up, businesses and government agencies need to realize that the costs of breaches far outweigh those of prevention – and that Americans are paying close attention.”

About the Unisys Security Index

The Unisys Security Index is an annual global study that provides insights into the attitudes of consumers on a wide range of security related issues. Lieberman Research Group conducted the survey in Latin America, Europe and the U.S.; Newspoll conducted the research in Asia-Pacific. The Unisys Security Index surveys more than 11,000 people in 12 countries: Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Colombia, Germany, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States. For more information, visit www.unisyssecurityindex.com.

About Unisys

Unisys is a worldwide information technology company. We provide a portfolio of IT services, software, and technology that solves critical problems for clients. We specialize in helping clients secure their operations, increase the efficiency and utilization of their data centers, enhance support to their end users and constituents, and modernize their enterprise applications. To provide these services and solutions, we bring together offerings and capabilities in outsourcing services, systems integration and consulting services, infrastructure services, maintenance services, and high-end server technology. With approximately 23,000 employees, Unisys serves commercial organizations and government agencies throughout the world. For more information, visit www.unisys.com.

Unisys is a registered trademark of Unisys Corporation. All other brands and products referenced herein are acknowledged to be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.