The Jericho Forum is going on the road to recruit American companies into its scheme to promote secure, but open, data exchange.
The vendor-neutral association comprises chief security officers in private business who are trying to develop security standards that will allow data to be protected without impeding communication between companies.
The Forum hopes to have working standards in the next three to five years and believes that users, rather than manufacturers, should be responsible for setting higher IT security standards.
"We need more hands to the pump," said Forum member John Meakin, group head of information security at Standard Bank.
"It's about users defining to businesses what they require in the name of security. We are writing specifications for security building blocks that can be used by customers to give the security solutions they require."
Meakin explained that Microsoft is tracking the activities of the Jericho Forum, and that the two organisations meet every six months.
The Forum will meet outside Europe for the first time on 5 and 6 May at Proctor and Gamble's offices in Cincinnati, Ohio.
It will present the latest findings of its six working groups to potential American members. Current members will also be lobbying their American counterparts to insist on better security standards.
"We have not rushed into the lobbying side," said Forum member David Lacey, director of information security at Royal Mail.
"But we want to get the balance right on users setting standards. We've had great success just on word of mouth, but it's time to develop this."
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