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Survey Reveals SMBs in Singapore are Placing Increased Emphasis on Information Protection

Key Highlights:
  • Singaporean SMBs' top concerns are data loss and cyber attacks
  • 67 percent of Singaporean SMBs have previously lost confidential and proprietary data
  • 73 percent of respondents are focusing on enhancing backup, recovery and archiving initiatives
SINGAPORE - 19 August 2010 - Symantec Corp. (NASDAQ: SYMC), today released the Singapore findings of its 2010 Global SMB Information Protection Survey. The survey reveals that small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs with 10 to 499 employees) are aware of the need to adopt a complete information protection strategy that goes beyond a basic antivirus solution. 62 percent of the respondents cited data loss as a key concern area and 62 percent consider cyber attacks as a potential business risk.

The 2010 findings indicate that information protection initiatives, such as backup, recovery and archiving are finding acceptance. The current annual average spend on IT is approximately S$12,900 (approx. US$10,000). A noteworthy trend is a marked increase in the adoption of backup and recovery solutions (73 percent), as well as new technology such as deduplication (53 percent), either installed, or in the process of installation.

"The impact of losing critical business information is detrimental for SMBs and can result in damaged reputation and revenue losses," said Tan Yuh Woei, country manager, Symantec. "Last year, a Symantec survey found that security awareness levels were lower and many SMBs did not have even a basic antivirus solution in place. The 2010 survey findings highlight a progressive trend towards SMBs adopting a more comprehensive information protection strategy."

Survey Highlights
  • Data Loss and its Impact
    According to the survey, 84 percent consider loss of critical business information a major concern. 67 percent of respondents lost proprietary or confidential data in 2009, with 64 percent suffering revenue losses. A significant number (54 percent) reported negative impact on their image and 48 percent saw a dip in customer trust.

  • Braving Cyber Attacks
    Cyber attacks continue to plague Singaporean SMBs. 54 percent of SMBs were prone to few cyber attacks this year, while 16 percent of SMBs faced them on a regular basis. However, 30 percent of SMBs saw an increase in cyber attacks against their organization. Out of these attacks, 26 percent were rated as "somewhat/ highly effective". The average annual cost of these cyber attacks for SMBs in APJ was US$152,266.

  • Information Protection Initiatives on the Rise
    Backup and recovery has emerged as one of the key areas of improvement in the survey this year. 73 percent of SMBs consider installing backup, recovery infrastructure as "somewhat important" and "absolutely important." 39 percent have an archiving solution running in their environment.

    SMBs have realized the importance of data backup and deduplication, with 46 percent of SMBs backing up their data on a daily basis, and 66 percent having initiated the discussions and the implementation process for data deduplication.

  • Budget Woes
    The annual average spend on IT by a Singaporean SMB is approximately S$12,900 (approx. US$10,000). This is marginally lower than the average spend of US$12,500 in the Asia Pacific and Japan region.

  • Disaster Recovery (DR)
    A well-documented DR plan is yet to find a place in the list of priorities as it was last year. 60 percent have either a plan that is not well-documented or needs work. 16 percent have no plan at all.
Symantec's Recommendations for Singapore SMBs:
Educate employees: Develop Internet security guidelines and educate employees about Internet safety, security, and the latest threats. Part of the training should focus on the importance of regularly changing passwords and protecting mobile devices.

Safeguard important business information: SMBs are facing increased risks to their confidential information so safeguarding this data is critical. One data breach could mean financial ruin for an SMB. Implement a complete protection solution to ensure proprietary information—whether its credit card information, customer data or employee records—is safe.

Implement an effective backup and recovery plan: Protecting information is more than implementing an antivirus solution.  Backup and recovery is a critical component of complete information protection to keep SMBs' desktops, servers and applications running smoothly in case of disruption—whether from a flood, an earthquake, a virus or a system failure. One outage could mean customer dissatisfaction and costly downtime, which could be catastrophic to the business.

Secure email and web assets: Select a mail and Web security solution that can help mitigate spam and email threats so SMBs can protect sensitive information and spend more time on day-to-day activities.  Spammers and phishers will use current events and social engineering tactics to get users to give up personal information such as credit card and banking information.


About Symantec
Symantec is a global leader in providing security; storage and systems management solutions to help consumers and organizations secure and manage their information-driven world. Our software and services protect against more risks at more points, more completely and efficiently, enabling confidence wherever information is used or stored. More information is available at www.symantec.com.

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