8129.0 - Business Use of Information Technology, 2001-02  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 02/04/2003   
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April 02, 2003
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)

Business adoption of information technology slows

The adoption of Information Technology (IT) by Australian business has slowed, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

In the twelve months to June 2002, no growth occurred in the proportion of businesses using a computer (84% of all businesses). Access to the Internet by Australian businesses increased slightly by 3 percentage points to 72%, and the proportion of businesses with a web presence increased by 2 percentage points to 24%. Small businesses were mainly responsible for the growth in the adoption of these technologies.

In contrast, the proportion of businesses with a computer, Internet access and web presence grew by 8, 13 and 6 percentage points respectively in the twelve months to June 2001.

Method of Internet access varies across business size. Access to the Internet through a dial-up modem was more prevalent in businesses employing 0 to 4 persons (88%), compared to large businesses employing 100 or more persons (46%).

During 2001-02, 25% of all Australian businesses placed orders over the Internet or web, compared to 20% during 2000-01. In contrast, the number of Australian businesses receiving orders for goods or services via these mediums declined from 9% to 6%.

Despite a decline in the number of businesses receiving orders for goods or services via the Internet or web, the estimated Internet income earned by Australian businesses increased by $1.9 billion to $11.3 billion in 2001-02. This represented 0.8% of total business income during 2001-02. (see Media Note)

In the year to June 2002, 41% of businesses reported some form of security incident or breach. At 38%, a virus was the most common IT security incident or breach reported.

Further information is in Business Use of Information Technology, Australia, 2001-02 (cat. no. 8129.0).

Media Note: Figure should be used with caution as many businesses surveyed did not maintain records on income received from Internet orders and therefore needed to estimate its value.