The construction industry's embrace of technology and data security is, at best, casual, suggests the results of a technology-practices survey with more than 1,000 responses released in January.

Technology consultant JBKnowledge Inc.'s third annual "Construction Technology" survey had 300 more participants than the year before and was up from about 450 the first time out. This year's survey was also a cooperative project, with the Construction Financial Management Association and Texas A&M University's Dept. of Construction Science. The report can be downloaded at the firm's website,

The project picks up where the CFMA left off two years ago, when the association discontinued its similar, biannual survey.

Canvassing small, medium and large companies about the software and devices they rely on at various stages of the construction process, the survey asked about their budgets and the resources allocated to IT staff, their embrace of new technologies, and developments in data integration, mobility and security.

Most of the respondents' companies are drifting into the cloud, with 40.5% saying their firms have no cloud security policies and procedures and 22.6% saying that, if their firms do have such policies, they are not aware of them. Almost 30% say their companies have no data in the cloud.

The responses suggest the vast majority of the surveyed firms spend less than 1% of corporate revenue on IT, regardless of company size. This compares with a cross-industry average, according to Gartner, of 3.3%. Construction-industry companies also tend to have very small or non-existent IT staffs, with many technology users saying they are going it alone.