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New NAWBO/Travelers Survey – Women Business Owners Optimistic But Vulnerable to Online Risks

nawbox500According to a survey conducted conducted at the NAWBO Women’s Business Conference in Miami earlier this month, women business owners are more optimistic about the future of their businesses, but are vulnerable to cyber liability.

The three main areas of the survey answered by 307 women covered business growth, business continuity, and exposure to risks caused by varying levels of cyber security.

Here are some of the highlights.

Business Growth

  • Ninety-six percent of women business owners expressed that they are “very confident” or “somewhat confident” that the business climate in their industry will improve over the next 12 months, up from 91 percent in 2012.

  • Eighty-one percent said they are “very likely” or “somewhat likely” to increase employee headcount in the next 12 months, up from 71 percent in 2012.

  • Over the next 12 months, more than half (58 percent) of the entrepreneurs surveyed say they are “very likely” or “somewhat likely” to purchase or lease new space, or improve their existing space

Cyber Awareness

  • Nearly one-third (32 percent) lack confidence that they are adequately protected against cyber risks.

  • Women business owners who lack confidence in their level of cyber protection and preparedness rose from 27 percent in 2012 to 32 percent in 2013.

Business Continuity

Fifty-six percent of women business owners admit they “don’t have” or are “not sure” if they have a written business continuity plan or disaster recovery document, up from 54 percent in 2012. If you’re one of those business owners, we’ll be interviewing Traveler’s CMO and Vice President of Business Insurance, Robyn Hahn in November, so feel free to respond with your questions for her below.

The findings on business optimism are in line with the study conducted earlier this year by NAWBO in conjunction with Web.com:

The State of Women-Owned Businesses survey found that the large majority of WBOs were optimistic about their business’ overall performance (81 percent) for the year ahead. They were also optimistic, though slightly less so, about the broader economic outlook (74 percent) in 2013.

The full results from the October survey are available for download from the Travelers Insurance site as a PDF [pdf, new window], or you can view a Slideshare embed of the document below.

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