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The recently released Veeam 2020 Data Protection Trends Report surveyed more than 1,500 business and IT leaders to get information on key data protection trends. The report highlights different trends in data management that positively and negatively impact businesses' finances and efficiency.
Let's dive straight in to check out all the key insights and data protection trends coming out of this new report.
Ransomware and Cyber Threats
The trend that may cause the most worry is that data leaks are costing businesses big — both in terms of cash and customer confidence. Ransomware and other cybersecurity threats have been around for decades, but in 2020, they are costing businesses more than ever — at an average of $80,000 per attack. The Veeam report indicates that this is the greatest challenge businesses face in 2020.
Ransomware is a kind of malware cybercriminals use to encrypt a victim’s files. After encrypting files so that the victim can’t access them, the criminal will seek payment to unlock them again. Further worsening this situation, paying the money to retrieve the data does not always ensure that it is returned. If the victim pays a data retrieval service, they may be unsuccessful in accessing the data. Additionally, cybercriminals may choose to not release the data once the ransom has been paid.
Other forms of data theft include phishing scams in which cybercriminals contact the victim (often by email) and trick them into providing sensitive information, such as financial information or confidential information about clients.
The report makes it clear that data loss prevention is important not only to avoid data theft, but also because any breach is likely to come with significant financial losses as well.
Outdated Systems and Skills Shortage
Another important data protection trend the report discusses is that businesses are investing time and resources to maintain outdated computer systems. The result of this is that data is being poorly managed, leaving it more open to leaks and attacks.
Not only do legacy systems pose a significant threat to data security, but they also require businesses to redirect capital and operating budget away from other important tasks related to new innovations and future-focused strategies. Worsening this problem is the fact that 42 percent of businesses reported having an insufficient number of employees with the necessary skills to drive change.
The Veeam report indicates that businesses spend an average of $485,000 on data protection each year. The combination of insufficiently skilled staff members and outdated data management systems leads to a much higher expenditure on data protection.
Impact on Brand Image
One of the most important data protection trends the report covers is the losses businesses incur in the form of client and customer confidence. Although specific figures are not available for these kinds of losses, they may represent the most significant costs associated with data loss.
According to the report, 73 percent of businesses are unable to consistently provide access to apps and data on their platforms; 44 percent reported that interruptions to data access had hurt their brand image; and 51 percent said they had lost customer confidence because of interruptions to data access. These numbers are supported by the fact that 95 percent of businesses experienced outages to data access, lasting an average of two hours per outage.
Outages such as these pose a significant threat. Not only do they directly affect business performance and efficiency, but they give the impression to clients and customers that the business is not equipped to offer the services it advertises — ultimately having a negative impact on brand image.
Cloud Data Improvements
The Veeam report suggests strong positive trends for data management and data loss prevention, including a 208 percent return on investment for the implementation of a cloud data system. The report suggests that cloud data management can be implemented quickly with immediate returns on investment.
One of the most important returns on investment was a 55-percent increase in data backup efficiency, which had run-on effects regarding client confidence and data loss protection.
Fifty-three percent of businesses reported improved confidence as a result of cloud data implementation, and 95 percent said they had experienced little to no financial impact from ransomware attacks as a result of switching to cloud management. These figures are very promising when compared to the significant losses incurred by businesses overall in 2020, and suggest that the implementation of cloud management systems can both improve data protection and reduce financial expenditure. Further, the safety provided by cloud data management services improves client and customer confidence in the business.
The overall takeaway from the Veeam report is that data loss prevention is a much better way to spend money than recovering data after it is lost. Data breaches represent an enormous cost for businesses in 2020, while implementing cloud computing represents only a fraction of this cost.
Stay Ahead of the 2020 Data Protection Trends
The 2020 Veeam report highlights many important data protection trends — both positive and negative. Business owners and IT leaders should be wary of the increased number of cybersecurity threats, as they lead not only to data loss, but also significant losses in money, resources and client confidence.
If you own or run a business, make sure you are implementing effective data loss prevention strategies before you experience security breaches. By being proactive, you can save money while also improving business performance and your customer experience.