The results of this week's Big Question made for grim reading. With only five weeks to go until the big day, just 60% of finance directors say they are confident the millennium bug has been squashed. As if the 40% who are not confident systems will emerge unscathed after the date change was not worrying enough - just two of the 25 FDs who said yes, the bug is definitely no longer a threat, were willing to put their names forward. The same veil of anonymity ran through the survey. A scarcely more encouraging ten of the 42 who said 'yes, probably' put their names to their answers. Many neutrals also stayed in the shadows - as did the majority of those who acknowledged the problem. Given how late in the year it is, not to say how long FDs have had to prepare for potential risks, the results should worry all small businesses, their customers and their suppliers - most of us, in other words. And it adds fuel to the fire of critics who say that the regulators have concentrated their attentions too much on the big boys - listed companies and City institutions. Many FDs said bug fears were a load of old hype - 'much ado about nothing,' said one. But given what's at stake - invoicing trails, record systems and any amount of hardware and software - can they really afford to be that complacent?
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