New Zealand Businesses Cautious of Web 2.0
Symantec Survey Reveals New Zealand Businesses Cautious of Web 2.0 and Mobile Applications
SMBs Examine Approach to Securing Data; Embrace Backup and Recovery, Green IT and Virtualisation
Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC) today announced the findings of its survey into the Internet security and storage behaviours of small and medium businesses (SMBs) in New Zealand. The survey, commissioned by Symantec and conducted by the Employers and Manufacturers Association (EMA), revealed that New Zealand SMBs believe security risks from mobile devices and Web 2.0 applications such as social networking are key areas of concern. The new wave of Web 2.0 applications and mobile devices is forcing New Zealand businesses to re-examine their approach to securing and managing their information and many are embracing backup and recovery, green IT and virtualisation solutions.
According to the survey, the key driver for 90 percent of SMBs to secure and manage their information is the risk of losing valuable data. One consideration is that as ‘millennial’ workers (born after 1980) join the workforce, NZ businesses can expect to see an increase in the use of emerging Web 2.0 and mobile technologies. More than 60 percent of respondents identified social networking and 68 percent named mobile applications as key security concerns for their business.
“Millennial workers can be among the highest performing in the workplace; however, the Web 2.0 applications they access at work and personal devices they store business data on can blur the lines between their personal life and work, potentially resulting in an increased risk of data leakage,” said David Dzienciol, senior director, sales and channels, Pacific, Symantec. “These new technologies present tremendous opportunities for productivity and greater engagement so business managers need to develop a plan that allows employees to explore, communicate and collaborate with these new technologies whilst also enabling confidence in the online world.”
“In the past, businesses would build higher and stronger walls to protect company information but as the threat landscape continues to evolve and the adoption of new technologies continues to accelerate, SMBs should be thinking about how they can incorporate policies on new technology usage into their existing security policies, systems and processes,” Dzienciol added.
Backup and Recovery, Green IT and Virtualisation
The survey revealed that 85 percent of SMBs backup their information automatically or continuously, compared to 68 percent in 2007. In addition, 34 percent of respondents had retrieved lost data such as email on one or more occasions in the past year.
According to the survey, approximately 81 percent of respondents have a backup and recovery solution however some SMBs continue to implement manual and portable backups on USB memory sticks and DVDs. “While manual and portable backup options have proven effective over the years, they are time-consuming and require discipline to ensure information is backed up regularly,” said Steve Martin, manager, mid market, Pacific, Symantec. “SMBs today are shifting towards more automated, secure, reliable and easy-to-use data protection solutions that are not only cost-effective and simple enough for businesses to install and administer, but also flexible enough to protect large amounts of information that may reside in remote office environments and on desktops and laptops.”
“The survey revealed that many New Zealand SMBs are embracing green IT, with 55 percent of respondents considering software to be part of their green IT solution. Not only are many SMBs implementing a green IT strategy to do their part to address environmental concerns, many are also discovering the cost savings they can achieve by addressing green concerns such as spiralling utility costs,” Martin added.
Fourteen percent of respondents implemented a virtualisation project over the past 12 months, with 63 percent of those doing so for budget, productivity and environmental reasons. This suggests that virtualisation continues to gain traction within New Zealand and there is opportunity for further application of virtualisation in the SMB market.
Additional Key Findings
- The survey revealed that 47 percent of
respondents in New Zealand had been affected by an Internet
security threat such as a computer virus and 37 percent were
impacted by a phishing scam in the last year
- 92 percent of New Zealand respondents implemented a spam filtering solution
- 60 percent of respondents have put a policy in place to guide staff on
Internet security practices
- Approximately 81 percent of respondents have
a multi-level security infrastructure comprising antivirus
software, firewall and spam filtering solutions
- 93 percent of respondents perform security updates at least weekly, with 71 percent of these being automatic updates
- 93 percent of the New Zealand SMB market operates on a Windows platform, with 77 percent operating in a Windows XP environment
To create a more protected business environment, Symantec recommends that SMBs deploy defence-in-depth strategies, which emphasise multiple, overlapping, and mutually supportive defensive systems to guard against single-point failures in any specific technology or protection method. This should include the deployment of regularly updated antivirus, firewalls, intrusion detection, and intrusion protection systems on client systems. In addition, Symantec recommends that SMBs establish recovery plans so that the business is not interrupted even in a disaster, and back up data and systems regularly to protect the organisation against present and future online threats.
Symantec offers SMBs a variety of security and storage solutions including Symantec Endpoint Protection 11.0 for SMBs, Backup Exec 12 for Windows Small Business Server, Backup Exec Systems Recovery 8 and Symantec Enterprise Vault.
The research was commissioned by Symantec and conducted in June 2008 by the Employers and Manufacturers Association (EMA). More than 170 IT decision makers in small to medium businesses that had up to 500 employees in New Zealand were surveyed. The financial turnover of these organisations for the last financial year ranged from approximately NZD$99,999 to more than NZD$5 million.
Symantec is a global leader in providing security, storage and systems management solutions to help businesses and consumers secure and manage their information. Headquartered in Cupertino, Calif., Symantec has operations in more than 40 countries. More information is available at www.symantec.com.