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Cloud Computing Confounds Small Business Owners

Although large enterprises seem to “get” what cloud computing is and the benefits it offers, the message hasn’t reached small businesses yet. In this month’s SB Authority Market Sentiment Survey released yesterday, of about 1,800 respondents, only 29 percent admitted they knew or had ever heard of cloud computing.

Of these, only a quarter (26 percent) said they could describe what cloud computing actually is.

Likewise, their understanding of offsite storage (or storage in the cloud) is lacking. When asked, “Do you have data or critical information, software, or hardware in your physical office like a server, a tower, or a hard drive that may not be secure,” 78 percent answered “No.” However, when asked if all of their “critical computer hardware, software, and data” was stored and backed up offsite, only 29 percent answered “Yes.”

In a statement, Barry Sloane, president and CEO of Newtek Business Services’ The Small Business Authority brand (which conducted the survey), observed, “There is no doubt that business owners will embrace the cloud concept and over time gravitate towards its massive benefits. We surveyed over 1,800 independent business owners and discovered that the concept of cloud computing has begun to disseminate into the marketplace, due primarily to large advertising programs by entities like Microsoft, Cisco, and others. Business owners will need to understand what the cloud is and what it can do for their businesses in the areas of cost control, data security, data protection, accessibility, efficiency, and productivity to facilitate a smooth running technological platform for their business.”

About the data backup poll results, Mr. Sloane noted, “Server huggers beware. The cloud is approaching; the security blanket of the server in the closet onsite and having an assistant backup important business data and confidential client information needs to be behind us all. Our survey this month is quite telling about what independent business owners really need to know about the cloud and how misinformed they are about data safety and security.”

-- James E. Powell
Editorial Director, ESJ

Posted by Jim Powell on 05/26/2011

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