SMBs spend more on coffee than IT
COMPUTING| July 23, 2012, 1:45 p.m.
Many small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) spend a greater amount of money on coffee and tea for their employees than they do to invest in their company’s IT. This rather surprising finding was made by worldwide market research organisation GfK during a recent study of SMBs. The aim of the survey, which was commissioned by global security software manufacturer AVG, was to explore the IT security software market landscape of SMBs.
In a world where IT is the enabler of business, this can lead to many problems for these SMBs – not least of which are the security risks they are faced with.
“The majority of SMBs are still focused on the more traditional threats to IT security, such as e-mail and web viruses, and while others are finally becoming aware of other ways in which their company’s security can be compromised, including theft of information and social engineering, not enough focus is being placed on these areas,” says Bruce Goodwill, AVG’s Sales Director for EMEA, Latin America and Australia. Only a little over half of the participating SMBs considered information security to be a major issue.
This laid back attitude many SMBs have towards IT security extends to mobile devices as well. In order to compete with larger corporations, SMBs are increasingly embracing mobile technology and providing their employees with tablets and smartphones so that they can access company information while on the go. However, few are aware of the potential security pitfalls that accompany this technology, with almost three quarters of the SMBs surveyed not agreeing that the use of mobile phones in business may represent a real threat to IT security.
“Statistics show that companies cannot afford to be so lax and ignorant about IT security and the longer term implications that it can have on their operations. The cost of IT security breaches reaches far beyond losing access to files containing customer or company information, or the money they will have to spend on replacing hardware.
During 2011, one-in-six SMBs – which translates to more than one million companies – in the US and UK experienced an IT security breach as a result of failing or insufficient IT security. As a result, 30 million man-hours of labour were lost while rectifying the results of the security breaches. Companies lost out on USD14.87 million in sales/revenue opportunities due to IT security breaches, and spent USD7.52 million to replace damaged hardware and corrupted computers,” says Goodwill.
He adds that businesses of all sizes should treat their company’s online security with the same level of importance as they do corporate governance and brand protection. On the technological front, Goodwill offers the following advice: “Start with the basics. Have strong password management, data encryption on company computers and make sure that you have up-to-date anti-malware software installed.”
Apart from the obvious benefits you’ll reap from having adequate IT security for your business, such as protecting your company’s valuable data from being stolen or exploited by cyber criminals and potentially saving you time and money, it will also provide you with peace of mind and leave you with more time to focus your attention on your company’s bottom line, Goodwill says. “That way, your employees will always have a well stocked kitchen at work.”
MORE COMPUTING NEWS
Police MfB, Intel, Airtel partner on computers for SMEsThe Nigerian Police Force Microfinance Bank (NPF MfB) has entered into a strategic partnership with Airtel and Intel to provide affordable and accessible technological devices for the Nigerian police force and SMEs in Nigeria. Read More
Transceiver warrantees: ProLabs separates fact from fictionValue-added distributer, Networks Unlimited distributes ProLabs’ product line of high-quality, OEM-compatible optical transceivers and direct-attach cables offering at significant cost savings, often up to 70 percent less than OEM branded products, across the African continent. Read More
Resolving the data centre disconnectThe disconnect between virtualised applications and physical storage is costing businesses time and money. Read More
Huawei’s Botswana footprint ‘commendable’: MDGao Wenli, Managing Director of Huawei Botswana, is upbeat about the progress his company has made in the country so far. Read More
Huawei stages inaugural ICT conference in BotswanaHuawei Technologies Botswana held its inaugural ICT conference where a lot of its cutting edge technology was on display. Read More
Huawei initiates e-learning in Ugandan schoolsIn a bid to deepen ICT adoption among Ugandans, Huawei Uganda has provided internet connected computers to schools in western Uganda. Read More
F5’s latest plugins create compelling argument to move to OpenStackOpenStack has emerged as one of the most popular cloud computing platforms, allowing organisations to easily build and scale next-generation applications in an open source environment. Read More
Dealing with the dark side of rapid digitisation in financial servicesMobile payments and digital banking is evolving at breakneck speed across Africa, raising new digital security risks. Read More
Networks Unlimited Recognised as Riverbed Distributor of the Year for South AfricaNetworks Unlimited, a value-adding distributor of converged technology, data centre, networking, and security technology throughout Africa, has announced that it has won the Riverbed® Technology Distributor of the Year 2015 Award for South Africa. Read More
MP says ICT can improve service deliveryAn Inter-District Public Service Celebration has given the Member of Parliament for Tati West, Biggie Butale the platform to encourage other public servants to take advantage of opportunities provided by ICT and youth talent to enhance service delivery. Read More
FEATURED STORYGovernment should encourage youths in ICT early
Youths should be given more encouragement to develop their ICT skills, an 11-year-old app developer told Kokumo Goodie.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHIBM Opens First Cloud Data Centre in South Africa
IBM is opening a new IBM Cloud Data Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa. The new cloud center is the result of a close collaboration with Gijima and Vodacom and is designed to support cloud adoption and customer demand across the continent.
COMPANY NEWSTigo, JI and GES equip teachers on child online protection initiative
Tigo, in partnership with J Initiative (JI), a youth focused non-governmental organisation in Ghana, have committed to protecting children online through policy advocacy, awareness creation, public education ...Ericsson and King’s College London demonstrate 5G tactile robotic surgery
Ericsson and King’s College London will be demonstrating a 5G use case of tactile robotic surgery at 5G World 2016 in London on 29-30 June.Tigo Business – Building trusted business partner relationships with clients
Tigo Business has increased and empowered its account management team to improve its overall customer service experience.