SINGAPORE, 8 September 2011 - Small businesses are not protecting their virtual environments enough, according to a recent survey conducted by Symantec.
The study, called 2011 Small Business Virtualisation Poll, was conducted by Applied Research, which surveyed IT professionals responsible for managing computer resources at small businesses with between five and 249 employees.
The survey was designed to gauge how small businesses are embracing virtualisation. The survey included 658 respondents in 28 countries in North America, EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa), Asia Pacific and Japan, and Latin America. Almost half, or 306 respondents, were from Asia Pacific and Japan.
Results from the Asia Pacific and Japan participants indicate that only 13 percent always back up their virtualised servers and 24 percent backup infrequently or not at all. The respondents are not doing any better in securing their data with only 40 percent completely secured. They say budget and staffing issues are preventing them from taking these essential actions.
Even those who said they were somewhat or completely secure were, in fact, less secure than they thought. A staggering 76 percent forego endpoint protection, 73 percent do not have anti-virus on their virtual servers, and 51 percent don't have a firewall.
"We also found that many small businesses are neglecting to protect their virtual environments, largely due to budget and staffing constraints," said David Dzienciol, Symantec's vice president, Channels and SMB, Asia Pacific and Japan.
Advice for small businesses
Meanwhile, Symantec has published a list of recommendations to the small businesses to better protect their systems.
Define a virtualisation strategy: Work with an IT consultant to develop a strategy. Proactively develop guidelines and assess data protection and security needs. Determine if moving to these cloud services are suitable for the business. Once there is a strategy, develop a plan and stick to it.
Secure virtual environments: Consider the security solutions needed to secure the virtual environment, including a firewall, anti-virus, and endpoint security. Establish security practices as an additional layer of protection.
Protect the data: Have a simplified approach to backup. Implement a solution that protects both physical and virtual environments. Consider a data deduplication solution to save space and time.
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