IT Managers Prefer 'Face' to MySpace

Dennis Faas's picture

What's a bigger waste of time: Facebook or MySpace? According to one web security company, name recognition could be a problem for the latter.

In the world of social networking, MySpace is the reigning royalty. Founded in August, 2003 and based out of sunny California, the site celebrated its hundred millionth account creation in August of 2006. Some 300 staff work out of its Beverly Hills headquarters.

That kind of established name may not be so positive for MySpace when it comes to web filtering. In a survey released last week, security firm Barracuda Networks Inc. found that 44% of companies used measures to block access to MySpace, with only a quarter taking similar steps to stonewall Facebook. 19% blocked both sites. (Source:

For those who aren't familiar with it, Facebook is the rising titan in the social networking world. Microsoft's recent infusion of $240 million is proof that Facebook comprises a much more potent threat to MySpace than the local IT manager.

Barracuda Network Inc.'s survey goes beyond social networking sites, however. They also found that 53% of IT security workers restricted web surfing as a whole, with another 65% planning to impose tougher limits in 2008 (an increase of 23%). Why is this no-fun approach the plan? According to the survey, reasons surround spyware protection (70%) and issues of employee productivity (52%).

Other reasons for slamming the door on Internet surfing include bandwidth worries (36%) and general liability concerns (28%).

According to Barracuda Networks Inc. president and CEO Dean Drako, "Businesses are increasingly applying content-control mechanisms to protect their networks and maintain maximum organization productivity...With the changing face of the Internet, companies need the flexibility to continuously monitor and customize Internet policy enforcement while providing their employees optimum use of the Web." (Source:

But, are IT managers and Barracuda missing the point? Is web surfing at work a great detriment to productivity, or the stress-relief measure needed to ensure that employees don't power down ahead of schedule?

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