During the Shutdown, is Your Data Secure on Government Websites? Jackson Walker Security Pro Joel Lytle Weighs In


Almost one month into the partial shutdown of the U.S. government, there are reports that the impacts on government websites like donotcall.gov and identitytheft.gov are affecting consumers. As the shutdown continues and .gov sites are unable to renew expiring security certificates, government websites may be exposed to vulnerabilities that hackers could exploit to gather user data.

Joel Lytle, Jackson Walker director of information security, discussed this issue on The Geek in Review podcast, co-hosted by Jackson Walker chief knowledge services officer Greg Lambert.

“If we’re going to .gov sites before they get all this straightened out, we really need to trust but verify,” Joel said.

Joel recommended that when visiting government websites, users right-click on the security certificate icon in their browsers to view the “certificate chain,” which can help confirm the security of the website.

If users have questions, Joel said that the best course of action is to contact your IT security team.

“We can give you a pretty good idea if it’s legitimate or not,” he said.

The podcast is part of Greg’s 3 Geeks and a Law Blog, which has received numerous awards, including induction into the ABA Blawg 100 Hall of Fame. In addition to leading the library and research teams at Jackson Walker, Greg works as a liaison between many departments on issues of business development, competitive intelligence, knowledge management, and firmwide initiatives.

Listen to the full episode of the podcast discussing the impacts of the government shutdown on legal information.