by September 5, 2011 0 comments











Symantec
announced the
findings of its
2011
Small Business virtualization Poll
which
examined the adoption of virtualization within small businesses and its
impact on their organizations. According to the survey, small
businesses have a strong interest in virtualization, but are still
learning how to adopt it in their organisations. As they implement
server virtualization, small businesses are putting their data at
risk. The survey found that most small businesses aren’t taking
the most basic steps to secure and protect their virtual
environments. The survey is based on 658 respondents in 28 countries
worldwide, of which 306 were from the Asia Pacific and Japan (APJ)
region.

Virtualization
presents an opportunity for small businesses with seventy-two percent
in the APJ region considering server virtualization,” said Ajay
Goel, Managing Director, India & SAARC, Symantec. “The
majority of respondents cited cost efficiencies and disaster-recovery
readiness as benefits they’re hoping to gain, with most still early
in the adoption cycle. We also found that many small businesses are
neglecting to protect their virtual environments, largely due to
budget and staffing constraints.”

Survey
Highlights

  • Financial Benefits Driving Decision
    to Virtualize.
    Seventy-two

    percent of respondents from APJ said their organisations are
    considering virtualization. Not surprisingly, financial benefits rank
    highest among reasons to adopt server virtualization. Reduced capital
    expense was cited by 68 percent, while 67 percent respectively said
    reduced operating expense and the ability to improve disaster-recovery
    readiness would drive their decisions to deploy virtualization. Other
    benefits include the ability to use fewer servers for the same number
    of applications (65 percent) and improved server scalability (65
    percent).

  • Limited IT Skills Holding Some Small
    Businesses Back.
    Despite

    their interest, small businesses are finding it difficult to move from
    discussions to execution. Only eight percent of APJ-based respondents
    have deployed virtualised servers and they are focusing their
    early-stage efforts on simpler, less critical application areas. Top
    challenges include performance (64 percent), backup (61 percent) and
    workload capacity and planning issues (58 percent). Nearly a third of
    small businesses not now planning virtualization cited lack of
    experience as a factor.

  • Data on Virtualised Servers Lacking
    Basic Security Protection.
    As small businesses move to virtual
    environments, they do not protect and secure their data. Only 13
    percent always back up their virtualised servers and 24 percent backup
    infrequently or not at all. They are not doing any better in securing
    their data — only 40 percent are completely secured. Respondents say
    budget and staffing issues are preventing them from taking these
    essential actions. Even those who said they are somewhat or completely
    secure are, in fact, less secure than they think. A staggering 76
    percent forego endpoint protection, 73 percent do not have antivirus on
    their virtual servers, and 51 percent don’t have a firewall.

Recommendations

There are some simple things small
businesses can do to make sure
they are properly protecting their data and systems:

  • Define a virtualization strategy: Work with an IT consultant to develop a
    strategy. Proactively develop guidelines and assess your data
    protection and security needs. Determine if moving to these cloud
    services are right for you. Once you have a strategy, develop a plan
    and stick to it.

  • Secure your virtual environments: Consider what security solutions you
    need to secure your virtual environment, including a firewall,
    antivirus, and endpoint security. Make sure you have established
    security practices as an additional layer of protection.

  • Protect your 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.

Symantec’s
Small
Business virtualization Poll

Symantec’s
Small
Business Poll is the result of research conducted in May 2011
by
Applied Research,
which surveyed IT professionals responsible for managing computer
resources at small businesses with between 5 and 249 employees. The
survey was designed to gauge how small businesses are embracing
virtualization. The survey included 658 respondents in 28 countries
in North America, EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa), Asia Pacific
and Japan, and Latin America.


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