The majority of global businesses questioned said that, even though US firms will soon be able to export encryption of a comparable strength, they would be more inclined to trust cryptographic solutions from European companies.
The survey, carried out by Danish Internet security firm LASAT, questioned 50 global companies on the impact of removing US export restrictions on cryptography. According to LASAT, 60 percent raised concerns over the US government's reputation of seeking to deliberately weaken security software.
Claus Christensen bears this out. "As we witnessed with certain widely used products towards the end of last year, it is not unheard of that the US Government will seek to keep control by putting in 'back-doors' on network security products."
Christensen says that this suspicion is enough to drive business away from the States. "Companies buying encryption software rightly expect 100 percent privacy from their investment. Not being sure, is not good enough. The last thing people want is to be looking over their shoulder thinking that either Big Brother is watching, or worse still, that they are open to hacking attacks."
Independent encryption expert Brian Gladman believes the US government will still restrict cryptography. "I suspect that we wont get strong encryption from the US. But I don't think they'll need to put back doors. No-one breaks crypto these days, they find other ways in."
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