Many businesses failed to get to grips with electronic "rioting and looting" after 11 September, according to a senior IBM executive.
Todd Gordon, vice president of IBM Business Continuity and Recovery Services, said that in the aftermath of events many companies that had disaster recovery plans in place to cover hardware gave no thought to protecting data while working in a temporary environment.
"Data protection, physical and logical, was not well addressed," said Gordon. "The major factor here is that there was a dramatic increase in security intrusion attempts, up over 100 per cent. Viruses were up 30 per cent since 11 September."
Before the attacks on the World Trade Center, the greatest concern for companies was hardware availability, he explained. After the attacks the greatest concerns are security. "The focus has dramatically shifted," he said.
Only now are companies beginning to take the issue of security seriously. A study by Forrester Research of 350 top technical managers conducted at the end of 2000 found that "companies are spending more on coffee for their employees than they are for security protection".
Gordon blasted firms that failed to address these types of incidents and said that more aggressive steps had to be taken to avoid security breaches.
"It has always been one of my great fears that, after the physical disruption of this type of calamity, smart organised individuals could get together to disrupt the flow of business through the electronic medium," he said.
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