New research from the UK Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has found that despite three fifths (60 percent) of small firms questioned using cloud computing services, the remaining two fifths (38 percent) remain sceptical about the benefits of the technology in the face of perceived risks.
When asked what risks they most associated with cloud computing, the FSB members questioned listed the following top five concerns: data theft or loss (61 percent), reliable access to online services (55 percent), concerns over who would have access to the data (53 percent), liability issues (41 percent) and over dependence on cloud computing services (33 percent).
Out of all the businesses questioned, just under half (45 percent) said they were already greatly or fairly reliant on cloud computing services. The most common services currently used by the small businesses who use cloud computing included: storing files online (74 percent), web based email and calendars (67 percent), file sharing services (64 percent), web based office software (38 percent) and accounting and invoicing services (37 percent).
When asked what changes would help persuade small firms to use cloud computing services, half of all respondents wanted plain English terms and conditions (48 percent) and nearly as many wanted simpler and more transparent pricing (46 percent).