Symantec Corporation has released a very interesting (annual) survey, the 2010 Global SMB Information Protection Survey. (Note: Small and medium sized businesses are defined as comprising 10 to 499 employees). Have a look for yourself – the hard stats are all here: Symantec Survey Reveals Information Protection is the Highest IT Priority for SMBs (Press Release).
It’s interesting to note the enormous lag for a large percentage of organizations in terms of their data security awareness, the associated needs, their answering measures of protection and what has been a lagging priority. The resultant level of loss, for both electronic data and hard assets, speaks for itself. SMBs are late to the party regarding protection of data, equipment, and reputation for that matter. Not that larger enterprises are all that tight… we’ve discussed The Chronology of Data Breaches here before (source: The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse), and I’m sure this readership is well-aware of recent, ongoing, breaches.
It’s understandable, somewhat, that the Business side of the Weave is often remiss regarding security and protection – but what of IT? IT has to be the standard bearer: make sure security protocols are in place and write policy to current standards – and watch for breaking practices that can be utilized to your environment’s best advantage. If Business falls down and suffers a breach due to its own remiss (perhaps foiling IT’s recommendation for more training, or more penalty, etc., in instituting greater care, for example), then the Business half of the equation can go frown in a mirror. But to IT I say: Be on the responsible forward edge, and apprise Business in a timely fashion. Document what you counsel and do.
Most breaches and loss are due to simple human error, which includes negligence and lack of standards and education – don’t make the error of having an uninformed, untrained, and uncaring staff.
Have a look at Symantec’s recommendations at the end of their Press Release.
June 23rd: On this day in 1931 Wiley Post and Harold Catty took off for their flight around the world.