The Government of the United States has ordered that by the end of 2016 all its websites to be encrypted, the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) announced on Monday.
This action has been taken in order to maintain and improve the security of both parties using governmental websites, the public and the U.S. government itself. By December 31, 2016 all such websites will use the HTTPS encryption in a mandatory way.
The White House is even encouraging the public to tried their hand at the new implementation, and judge for itself which option is better. The U.S. Government has presented to the world their policy versions, both the proposed and the final one, by uploading them on Github.
The HTTPS encryption ensures that the security of websites’ users and their personal information is dully guarded by a third party who verifies if the website is genuine.
Looking at statistics and the transition progress for that matter, we see on a governmental website that 31% of all websites have already made the transition to a securer virtual world. Grades are also awarded by SSL labs, who places The House of Representatives site at a very low level, by giving it an F.
Moving from an unsecured website to a secured one will not be as smooth or as easy as it might seem on a first look. Uploading their already existing data such as pictures, for example, is time consuming and also expensive.
The processes of replacing, removing or updating could be the biggest issue as referred to the aspect of time consuming, according to Tony Scott, the US Chief Information Officer.
Even though the above mentioned site has the HTTPS encryption it does not enforce it thus losing the purpose of having it in the first place.
Initially HTTPS encryption was required for the websites that necessitated secured access. But constant pressure from giants such as Mozilla and Google to make HTTPS encryption a standard, impelled other huge technological companies, such as Facebook, Microsoft and Twitter to adopt the encryption and enforce it to a large extent.
Yet not all opinions are on the same wavelength. Many argue that security will still be a problem, and data could still be subjected to modification, tracking and even eavesdropping.
The U.S. government however is confident that the mandatory encryption of their websites will further provide a better protection of the public information. Plus it will improve its own standard and align itself with the measured already used in other sectors.
Image Source: Ciphercloud