BT woos small firms with backups and wireless

New services have been launched by BT for customers who have made it onto broadband

BT is targeting small businesses with two new products launched in the last week -- a data backup service, and a wireless network in a box.

The backup product, called BT Datasure, is designed for a small or medium-sized firm that wants to maintain a secure copy of all the data on a server, which can be operating a Linux, Solaris or Windows operating system. Running constantly, it records the creation of new files or any changes made to new ones as soon as they take place.

BT says this is a big improvement on services that just make a new backup every night.

"Traditional recovery services have depended on expensive or complex IT systems, causing too many firms to ignore data backup, a decision they often come to regret. BT's new service makes all that hassle simply redundant," claimed Mick Hegarty, general manager for information and communication technology at BT.

"Online data backup is a real benefit of broadband, and addresses the time, complexity and reliability shortcomings of traditional back-up methods," Hegarty added.

Companies that sign up for Datasure will be charged a one-off fee of £475. Ongoing costs vary depending on how much data is being stored, but BT says it will start at £95 per month.

The technology behind Datasure is being provided by disaster-recovery firm ImperaData, and this deal with BT is understood to be the first of several new moves planned by ImperaData for the UK market.

The launch of Datasure came just days after BT launched a product allowing a small firm to set up a wireless LAN within an hour. For £400 (ex. VAT), customers get a wireless router and four access points -- manufactured by Askey -- plus access to a freephone helpdesk.

According to a BT spokesman, security concerns have been addressed with the inclusion of an integrated Internet firewall. Additional security advice will be available from the helpdesk.