Indian SMBs to spend US$161 Million on IT security

by CXOtoday Staff    Apr 18, 2007

AMI’s 2006-2007 India Small Business Market Overview, Comprehensive Market Opportunity Assessment, India Medium Business Market Overview and Comprehensive Market Opportunity Assessment studies highlight that Indian small and medium businesses (SMBs) are on the footpath to spend over US$161million on increasing their IT security solutions this year.

Products and services covered in this study include established and emerging hardware, software, applications and business process solutions. The studies track a broad spectrum of issues pertaining to budgets, purchase behaviors, decision influencers, channel preferences, outsourcing, service and support.

According to AMI Partners’ latest survey, almost 50% of India’s medium businesses (100-999 staff) and 36% of small businesses (1-99 staff) have experienced malware attacks and hard drive failures over the past 12 months, emphasizing on better security protection.

“Indian SMBs are interested in reducing the number of different security products and brands they use. This has led to the popularity of integrated security suites which bundle multiple products such as anti-virus, anti-spam, email protection, firewall, and others in one packaged offering,” says Neha Jalan, Kolkata based analyst, AMI Partners.

India’s expansion is being driven by its growing SMB sector, which is experiencing revenue increases and double digit growth. Larger employee mobility, increased competition and expansion of office locations pushed more SMBs in India to embracing IT and Internet.

With the advent of broadband at competitive prices, the threat of viruses and spam has escalated. “Electronic attacks are considered to be the single largest threat to data security. Protection from viruses, worms and hackers remains the primary reason behind SMB investments in IT security,” said Jalan.

The Indian SMBs also face regulatory compliance issues, influencing their IT expenses. A recent AMI survey reveals that over half of the country’s MBs listed regulatory compliance for driving IT security deployment, while PC owning SBs attributed their investments to regulatory pressures. The survey also revealed Indian MBs are increasingly competing and partnering with large businesses, influencing their IT infrastructure. 52% in the survey mentioned that large customers and suppliers had influenced investments in security solutions.

“As businesses progress towards deploying firewalls, VPNs and IDS, managed security services will offer the twin benefits of convenience and cost effectiveness,” Ms. Jalan adds.

SMBs like BPO are alert about outsourcing their security management to external experts in order to keep to their client s information confidential. Managed security is expected to be one of the fastest growing security investments in Indian SMBs. Vendors providing secure, reliable and scalable services will find the Indian SMBs a highly receptive market.