IT Security Budgets Show Modest Gains in 2004

August, 2004

According to preliminary results of Computer Economics’ 2004 IT Security Spending & Trends study, security budgets in small organization experienced modest gains in 2004. The study, which included in-depth interviews with over 100 senior executives, defines small organizations as having annual revenues under $250 million.

While slightly over 10% of the respondents from small organizations did admit that continuing IT budget cuts had forced them to make reductions in the area of security, the overwhelming majority indicated positive security budget growth. Over 25% of these executives reported their IT security budgets grew by more than 5%; with a few companies stating their security budgets had increased by over 10% over 2003.

Although this information is encouraging, small organizations are lagging behind their larger counterparts. Preliminary study results indicate that the median IT security budget change in medium organizations was 3.5% in 2004, meaning that half of the medium organizations in the study had increases above 3.5% and half had increases below that percentage. In large organizations the median change rose to 4%. Medium organizations are defined in the study as having revenues between $250 million and $1 billion, while large organizations have revenues in excess of $1 billion annually.

IT Security Budget Change 2003-2004

Small Organizations

(Annual Revenues

Under $250 Million)






Security Budget Change




Figure 1

In contrast, the median IT security budget change in small organizations was a more modest 2.5%. At the 25th percentile budget changes remained on the positive side coming in at 1%, and at the 75th percentile security budget changes in small organizations rose to a very respectable 5%. Figure 1 illustrates the 2004 IT security budget changes in small organizations.

August 2004

Computer Economics’ 2004 IT Security Spending & Trends study is now available. This in-depth study examines security budget trends in several major categories, as well as current IT security practices and trends across every major industry sector. To order a copy today, contact us at 1-800-326-8100, ext. 51.