30 Sep 2010

Security fears stem web 2.0, social networking adoption

Many companies are shying away from web 2.0 and social networking platforms because of security fears, according to a new study conducted by an internet security company in a partnership with the Center for Education and Research in Information Assurance and Security at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana.

Half of survey respondents said issues with security have deterred their companies from embracing web 2.0 and social networking. Among the primary security concerns, malicious software was at the top with 35 percent.

Next in line was viruses at 15 percent, overexposure of information at 11 percent and spyware at 10 percent.

"To reap the benefits of web 2.0, organizations must be proactive about understanding and managing the corresponding challenges," said Eugene Spafford, founder and executive director of the Purdue center.

Still, experts believe companies will be forced to embrace the platforms as consumers continue to show interest. Facebook alone has more than 500 million users.

But security concerns aren't unwarranted. A recent study showed 33 percent of small businesses were hit with malware from a social networking site. And many suffered financial loss as a result.