Securing small business - the role of information technology policy
conference contributionposted on 2005-01-01, 00:00 authored by Lynn BattenLynn Batten, Tanya Castleman
As small and medium enterprises develop their capacity to trade electronically, they and their trading partners stand to gain considerable benefit from the resulting transaction efficiencies and business relationships. However, this raises the question of how well small business manages its IT security and the threats that security lapses may pose to the wider trading network. It is in the interest of all members of an electronic trading network, as well as governments, to assist smaller companies to secure their business data. This paper considers the relationship between IT security management and IT policy implementation among small businesses involved in business-to-business eCommerce. It reports the results of a survey of 240 Australian small and medium businesses operating in a cross-industry environment. The survey found a low level of strategic integration of eCommerce along with inadequate IT security among the respondents, despite the fact that 81% were doing business online and 97% identified their business data as confidential. Businesses which implemented satisfactory levels of security technologies were more likely than others to have an information technology policy within the organisation. The paper proposes a model that outlines the development of security governance and policy implementation for small and medium businesses.