According to the results of a recent survey of more than 4,800 business and IT managers in the U.S., the U.K., Germany, France, Australia, Japan, Brazil and Russia, the use of encryption is growing steadily in response to consumer concerns, privacy compliance regulations and ongoing cyber attacks.

Thales e-Security's 2013 Global Encryption Trends Study, based on research by the Ponemon Institute, found that 35 percent of organizations now have an enterprise-wide encryption strategy, up from 29 percent the previous year.

Similarly, only 14 percent of organizations surveyed have no encryption strategy, down from 22 percent the previous year.

The primary driver for organizations deploying encryption is to lessen the impact of data breaches -- among those organizations that believe they have an obligation to disclose data breaches, almost half believe that encrypting their data provides a safe harbor that avoids having to disclose a breach at all.

The two greatest challenges faced by organizations executing a data encryption policy are discovering where sensitive data actually resides (reported by 61 percent of respondents), and the ability to deploy encryption technology effectively (reported by 50 percent of respondents).

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