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Data recovery plans face tall task as storage levels grow

Too much data is weighing heavily on data recovery plans, according to a recent survey.

The problem has scaled beyond what many organizations can handle, said Douglas Brockett, president of backup and recovery software vendor StorageCraft, which commissioned the survey.

“People are choking on the volume of data” that’s expected to be backed up, Brockett said. “I think we’re seeing a breaking point.”

The survey of more than 500 IT decision makers — which include management-level employees and above, according to StorageCraft — found that 43 percent are struggling with data growth and believe it is going to get worse. Fifty-one percent are not confident that their organizations can perform instant data recovery after a failure.

Difficulties with data recovery plans hit organizations of all sizes, from small businesses to large enterprises, Brockett said.

Specifically:

  • 58% of companies with revenues under $1 million are not confident of instant recovery
  • 50% of companies with revenues between $1 million and $500 million are not confident of instant recovery
  • 51% of companies with revenues of more than $500 million are not confident of instant recovery

In addition, 51% of larger organizations said they would benefit from more frequent data backup but their infrastructure doesn’t allow it, according to the survey. And among businesses with less than 500 employees, 65% are not confident they can get their systems back up in minutes.

Certain business areas feel the data recovery burn more than others. Top examples include healthcare and its needs in data retention and mission-critical data, and financial services with time-sensitive data, Brockett said.

Specifically, 56% of healthcare and 54% of finance IT decision makers in the survey said they would benefit from more frequent backups, but the scale of data growth and backup technology infrastructure doesn’t allow it.

“You see a lot of anxiety in these types of industries,” Brockett said.

StorageCraft's Douglas Brockett

Douglas Brockett

While the cloud is a popular place for off-site copies, data recovery plans suffer because the process to retrieve data from a provider like Amazon Web Services can be expensive and slow, Brockett said.

Organizations should be thinking, “Can I spin up a virtual machine in the cloud?” As in, if you have cloud backup, you should have cloud recovery, in the form of disaster recovery as a service.

“Make sure your off-site backup is bootable,” Brockett said.

To improve data recovery plans in the face of exponential data growth, Brockett suggests organizations use integrated, scalable data management and protection platforms. And organizations should be smart with data, using tiered storage and data reduction techniques.

“Data analysis is a critical part of getting a strong data protection infrastructure,” Brockett said.

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