Nearly Nine Out of Ten Businesses Take Proactive Approach to Security: AT&T Study

Investments in Cloud Services and Mobile Applications Help Businesses Prepare for Potential Disasters

Dallas, Texas, June 10, 2013

With fears of potential security breaches and natural disasters like Superstorm Sandy and the recent Oklahoma tornado weighing heavily on IT executives, businesses nationwide have continued to grow and advance their business continuity and disaster recovery plans to incorporate the adoption of wireless network capabilities, cloud services and mobile applications.

The annual AT&T* Business Continuity Study found that:

  • More than half of executives surveyed (63%) cite the looming threat of security breaches as their most important security concern for 2013.
  • 84 percent of executives are concerned about the use of mobile networks and devices and its impact on security threats.
  • 88 percent of those surveyed understand the increasing importance of security and indicate that their companies have a proactive strategy in place.
  • Nearly two-thirds (64%) of companies include their wireless network capabilities as part of their business continuity plan.
  • 87 percent of executives indicate their organizations have a business continuity plan in place in case of a disaster or threat – a slight uptick from last year (86%).

The results for the latest AT&T annual business continuity study brings to light several trends regarding how businesses are preparing themselves for potential disasters and threats. AT&T has conducted this study for twelve consecutive years, surveying IT executives from companies in the United States with at least $25 million in annual revenue to measure the national pulse on business continuity planning.

2013 AT&T Business Continuity Study Key Findings:

With the increase in IT budgets, companies are increasingly  utilizing the cloud for their business continuity plans to help minimize the impact of potential threats and disasters.

  • Three-fourths (76%) of companies are using cloud or plan to invest in cloud services in 2013. Of those surveyed, 62 percent already include cloud services as part of their corporate infrastructure – up 11 percentage points from the previous year.
  • 66 percent (two-thirds) of companies are using or considering using cloud services to augment their business continuity strategy.
  • For disaster recovery purposes, a plurality of companies plan on leveraging cloud computing for data storage (49%)

 As companies look beyond the potential impact of natural disasters to the impact of network security events, they continue to expand their disaster plans accordingly.

  • Three-fourths (78%) of companies indicated that their business continuity plan accommodates the possibility of a network security event.
  • Seven out of ten (73%) companies are taking proactive or reactive measures to protect against distributed denial of services (DDos) attacks.
  • 52 percent are taking proactive measures by identifying potential attacks with DDoS protection services.
  • The majority of organizations surveyed invest in mobile security services. Of those companies, 66 percent take proactive measures against DDoS attacks.

“Companies today are very aware and concerned about the potential threats that could disrupt their operations,” said Michael Singer, AVP, Mobile, Cloud and Access Management Security at AT&T. “With their business continuity plans in place, businesses are investing in new technologies like network enabled cloud services to help strengthen and expand their overall continuity strategies.”

AT&T offers a wide array of business continuity services, encompassing disaster planning, risk management, recovery preparedness and communications readiness. In addition, services such as business-impact analysis, risk assessments, enterprise hosting, cloud computing and application services, a full continuum of storage solutions, high-availability network solutions and network and IT security solutions can be important components of a company’s business continuity plans.

AT&T also conducts several Network Disaster Recovery (NDR) exercises each year in both regional and international markets. These events are designed to test, refine and strengthen AT&T’s business continuity and disaster recovery services.  By simulating large-scale disasters and network service disruptions, AT&T can apply and refine best practices for rapidly restoring communications.

AT&T has invested more than $600 million in its NDR program, which includes specially trained managers, engineers and technicians from across the United States, as well as a fleet of more than 320 self-contained equipment trailers and support vehicles that house the same equipment and components as an AT&T data-routing or voice-switching center.

For more information, click: 2013 AT&T Business Continuity Study and year-over-year comparisons.

Study Methodology

The 2013 AT&T Business Continuity Study was conducted by Research Now and is based on the results of a national sample of 500 online surveys among Information Technology (IT) executives in companies with over $25 million in annual revenue. Surveys were obtained between April 30 and May 5, 2013.

All participating executive have primary responsibility for business continuity planning, with fifty-nine percent (59%) representing companies with locations outside the U.S.