RealTime IT News

Netcraft Survey Analyzes Use of Encrypted Transactions

Netcraft, the Bath, UK-based Internet consultancy, announced a monthly Secure Server Survey that analyzes the use of encrypted transactions on the World Wide Web.

Best known for its Web Server Survey, which identifies the relative popularity of different brands of Web server software, Netcraft says it is filling a void for accurate information about the use of strong cryptography on the Internet.

The firm uses automated network exploration to compile data from which it draws key metrics about the growth of Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) sites, the relative market shares of different certificate authorities, and the number of sites using protective encryption.

Mike Prettejohn, director of Netcraft, said: "Market Research companies use sampling and teleresearch to try and guess this kind of information. We explore the network and find out."

One initial finding of the survey is an indication that the U.S. government's export regulations, prohibiting the sale of strong encryption, has done little to inconvenience businesses outside the U.S. from using it.

"Currently around 1 in 3 sites run by non-U.S. companies are capable of 128-bit encryption, albeit with significant variations from country to country, in some cases reflecting local legislation on cryptography," according to Netcraft.