Symantec: 46 Percent of Business Data Resides Outside the Firewall

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Symantec recently published its 2012 State of Information Report, which warns that fully 46 percent of corporate information is being stored outside of companies' own data centers.

"This category of information is referred to as 'information sprawl,'" writes ITchannelinsight's Gilbert Zammit. "The index shows that information sprawl is quite significant in growing markets such as India and China while it is more controlled in other areas such as France and Japan."

"At 53 percent, small and medium businesses (SMBs) outpace enterprises when it comes to information residing outside the firewall, when taking into account mobile devices and laptops," Help Net Security reports.

"The study found that 12 percent of business data resides on private or hybrid cloud and 11 percent of data on the public cloud," writes Computer Weekly's Archana Venkatraman. "The advantages in cost and agility presented by cloud computing are leading to significant use of the cloud to store business information, according to Symantec. Some 24 percent of data is stored on mobile devices, including laptops (10 percent), smartphones (7 percent), and tablets (7 percent)."

"More than a third of businesses told Symantec that they suffered the exposure of confidential information due to lost or stolen mobile devices," writes Small Business Computing's Pedro Hernandez. "Forty-six percent of respondents do not feel that the data residing on their smartphones is secure and 47 percent have the same misgivings about tablets."

"Businesses are undergoing a transformation unlike anything we've seen before," Symantec group president for enterprise products and services Francis deSouza said in a statement. "With mobile devices and cloud giving employees access to information from nearly anywhere, we're also seeing more sensitive information living beyond the traditional IT boundaries. This is creating concern about how to best protect this information."