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Disaster recovery for small businesses

IBM extends its disaster recovery service to small and mid-sized businesses to help them bounce back from disasters and system outages.

SAN FRANCISCO--IBM (IBM) today extended its disaster recovery service to small and mid-sized businesses to help them bounce back from disasters and system outages.

Working through resellers, IBM also is opening its outsourced security services to smaller firms, Big Blue announced at the IBM Business Partner Executive Conference.

"Security is becoming more and more important to customers as they come online," said Robert Holderman of IBM Global Services. The IBM moves are consistent with its strategy of reaching smaller firms via resellers, rather than through its direct sales force.

Research from Gartner Group suggests that two out of five companies that experience a catastrophe or an extended system outage never resume operations. Of those that do, a third are out of business within two years.

Protection Express, designed for midrange AS/400 and workstation RS/6000 customers through IBM Global Services, includes back-up systems delivered to the customer within 48 hours, use of an IBM recovery location, a two-day planning seminar, and other services.

IBM security services under IBM's Internet Emergency Response Service are being extended to companies with fewer than 1,000 employees. They offer security assessment, ethical hacking, intrusion detection, and firewall and antivirus services.

Pricing for the Protection Express service, based on the type and number of machines covered, begins at $3,000 for a five-year contract for customers with small AS/400 systems, Holderman said.

In other offerings through resellers for small businesses, IBM announced:

  • IBM ServiceSuite, prepackaged support services for small and medium-sized businesses or departments of larger companies. The package covers IBM servers, enterprise service, midrange systems, Netfinity, and personal systems, including components, disks, tapes, networks, clients, and printers. IBM also announced ServiceElect, which makes it easier for IBM's sales force to customize service offerings for large customers.

  • A "rent-an-application" offering using J.D. Edwards enterprise resource planning software, enabling companies with 200 or more employees to use the enterprise software without buying it.

  • A toolkit for resellers to simplify installation, setup, and configuration of networking products.

  • Rebates to distributors on e-business software from IBM and Lotus. Included under the rebate program is IBM's upcoming suite of Windows NT applications designed to compete with Microsoft. Lotus Notes will be added in the future.