One in five home PCs still has no anti-virus and firewall protection - Even small businesses could improve IT security

Despite numerous scares about viruses, hacking attempts and internet fraud in recent months, one in five home PCs is still not protected by anti-virus and firewall software. Small businesses also need to improve their IT security. This is revealed by two surveys of private individuals and small businesses in Sweden performed by Telia.

79 percent of individuals asked have both firewall and anti-virus software installed on their PCs. However 19 percent said they only had one or the other. A further two percent admitted to not knowing what, if any, security they had on their computer. The percentage of people with both anti-virus and firewall software has however, risen from 74 to 79 percent over the past six months.

Of the group with no protection of any kind installed, 28 percent say it is because they do not know how it works. Other common reasons for not having a firewall or anti-virus software is that they think they are difficult to install, they do not need it or they feel it is too expensive.

“To have adequate protection and be able to surf the internet today means you have to have both anti-virus software and a firewall installed. And simply installing them is not enough, you have to make sure they are constantly updated. The simplest way to be sure it works is to buy a security package,” says Bodil Prising, Head of dataservices for the enterprise market at TeliaSonera Sweden.

Almost one in ten company computers totally unprotected
Small businesses could also improve their IT security. Only four percent say they do not have anti-virus software but a much higher proportion (14 percent) have no firewall installed. A further five percent are not sure whether or not they do have a firewall. In addition to lacking this, nine percent of business computers do not encrypt their data or have any security against logging in, which means anyone can access their system and the data on it if it is stolen or otherwise lost.

About the survey
Via an internet survey, Telia asked 7,412 private individuals in Sweden and 1,842 small businesses (1-9 employees) about IT and data security. The survey is representative of the whole of Sweden. Respondents were Telia customers. The surveys were conducted from 17-28 November and 25-30 November 2005.
Further information for journalists can be obtained from:
Bodil Prising, Head of dataservices for the enterprise market at TeliaSonera Sweden, through TeliaSonera Sweden´s Press Office, +46 8 77 58 30