SMEs fear their own networks

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Small and medium sized enterprises fear that their own networks could pose the biggest threat to business prosperity in 2008..

A survey conducted by internet service provider Star found that 59 percent of SME leaders do not believe that their networks have the necessary security to withstand an increasing array of email and internet threats.

Over half also fear that they have insufficient redundancy built into their corporate networks to function in the event that a key link fails.

Ben White, chief executive at Star, said: "Small and medium-sized business networks have become increasingly complex over the past couple of years as they use new internet technologies to drive growth and reach new markets.

"With this increasing reliance on internet technologies, however, comes the increased risk of a single failure taking out their entire infrastructure.

"Our survey results illustrate the importance that business leaders place on overcoming the additional challenges presented in terms of building resilience and fail over into SME networks.

"ISPs have a responsibility to help SMEs adopt and implement the necessary internet technologies to ensure their business remains operational at all times."

Star recommends that businesses know what to expect from their ISP or hosting provider in the event of a failure.

Staff education is also important, as most security breaches can be avoided through staff training that nurtures a security culture within the company, Start said.

Companies should also investigate multi-protocol label switching as a viable technology for connecting branch offices and providing network resilience.
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