Small-Mid-Sized Businesses Are Wide Open To Network Attacks

By | June 6, 2006

Research by managed security company, Network Box, finds that small and mid-sized businesses are leaving themselves wide open to IT network attacks. Network Box conducted research into the network security of 250 UK small and mid-sized businesses (between 0 – 500 employees) shows that: 63 percent of businesses have no system in place to protect against phishing attacks;

50 percent do not protect employees against spyware; 69 percent don’t filter web content to protect their networks from employees downloading harmful content from the Internet; and 70 percent don’t have any intrusion detection and prevention (IDP) in place.

The research also found that more than 99 percent of companies have no idea how often their anti-virus protection is updated; and the same number do not have any way of being alerted if the update system fails. This leaves small businesses extremely vulnerable, says Simon Heron, Director of Network Box: “If the person responsible for the IT of a small business doesn’t know if the threat protection system is being updated regularly or if it has failed completely, that is opening the door of the network to viruses, worms, Trojans or any other kind of network attack.“

A staggering 63 percent of businesses are not aware that they have a duty of care to employees to protect them from exposure offensive content. Sixty-three percent do not monitor how employees use the Internet.

According to the research, on average, a business with 500 networked PCs could save more than Ј140,000 in the cost of multiple licenses, equipment, internal resource and external contractors by streamlining and outsourcing their network security systems*. Says Heron: “Because smaller businesses don’t have the kind of sophisticated in-house resource of larger businesses, they are not able to analyse the cost of different systems. Often by consolidating their threat protection systems in one place, or outsourcing them to a specialist, businesses can save significant money and time.“

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