86% of Australian city council websites are not sufficiently encrypted to protect user data, a new report has found.

“Australian council websites are failing significantly when it comes to protecting user privacy through effective encryption,” according to the study by OpenCities.

“To preserve essential functionality and ensure that online transactions remain private, Council websites should encrypt all data exchanges with their residents,” it added.

OpenCities studied the performance and user experience of all council websites in Australia.

“If no effort is made to protect the data of residents, everything from their name, address, passwords and payment details can be eavesdropped,” the report said.

Popular browsers, like Chrome and Firefox, flag websites that do not encrypt data, the report adds, warning visitors to proceed with caution and diverting visits from local residents.

To learn more about the research results and OpenCities, download the full report below.

Image by James; CC BY-SA 2.0

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