AT&T Study: 28% of U.S. Companies Unprepared for Disasters


With yet another hurricane season looming, an AT&T Inc. national study on business continuity and disaster recovery reveals that 28 percent of U.S.-based companies do not have adequate plans in place to cope with natural or other types of disasters. For the fifth consecutive year, AT&T polled chief information officers and other senior IT executives at companies throughout the United States with more than $10 million in annual revenue for their views on disaster planning and business continuity trends.

Despite the devastating effects of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, nearly half of the 1,000 companies polled by AT&T say they have not taken specific protective action in the event of an emergency. What’s more, they claim that they do not have emergency procedures in place for when state or federal government issues a warning for an impending disaster, such as severe weather.

For those companies hit with recent disasters, 9 percent indicated that it cost them about $500,000 a day or more in repairs and loss of business. This translates to a loss of $2.5 million a week if normal business operations cannot be restored in a timely manner.

Of the 10 U.S. markets surveyed, it’s not surprising that the cities along the coast, such as Los Angeles, Miami, New York and Washington, D.C. were among the most prepared. These firms claim that they have made an effort to place business continuity planning as a high priority. On the other hand, according to the report, Detroit, St. Louis and Seattle were the least prepared cities when it comes to business continuity planning.

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