Data Protection. Should You Tackle It Alone?
The threat of data loss continues to soar, as do the costs of disruption and recovery. Data risks challenge IT teams at every juncture. Hardware failure has become the leading cause of data loss and/or system downtime. Meanwhile, the impact of ransomware attacks—which often render data corrupt, inaccessible, or lost—have multiplied 15-fold over in the last two years alone—and are expected to rise further.
Despite the high stakes, implementing a comprehensive data protection strategy can be surprisingly difficult to execute. For starters, few IT teams can dedicate in-house resources to sorting through the large universe of new vendor offerings, let alone managing a major implementation and ongoing maintenance. Data protection has become big business, with sales projected to reach $119.95 billion by 2022—a 16 percent annual jump up from last year’s $57.22 billion.
One way to simplify your data-protection strategy is to partner with a third-party specialist. An external resource can help you define and implement the right data protection strategy for your organization.
It’s worth noting that research indicates that using multiple vendors for data protection, rather than a single trusted partner, can backfire. Using four or more was linked to losing an average of 5.47 terabytes of data, while those who use one vendor lose an average of 2.36 terabytes—still a staggering amount of data loss and further evidence of the importance of a comprehensive data protection strategy that includes regular audits and restore testing. Regardless, it is clear that finding the right primary partner can not only strengthen protection, but also simplify management.
Five benefits of enlisting a data-protection partner
As we’ve recently written, a comprehensive data protection strategy can help fill in the gaps. A complete strategy encompasses everything from access management, data security, and app inventory to backup protocol, data location, and DR and business continuity.
Enlisting a reliable partner in a strategic, comprehensive refresh can pay off in five major ways:
1. Improved data protection. With a team of specialized data protection experts at the ready, you can adopt cutting-edge strategies to combat today’s data risks. Your partner also can assess your infrastructure to identify hardware at risk of failure and data destruction.
2. Streamlined data protection management. Protecting data involves many moving parts, including devices, software and storage solutions. An external partner can help you develop a comprehensive strategy through which you can consolidate and centralize your data storage and backup. And remember when it comes to backups, don’t underestimate the importance of testing. If you can’t restore the backup, it’s as if you never had the data backed up in the first place.
3. Easier access to more advanced resources. New approaches like automated backup and intelligent migration are can help organizations improve security. A trusted partner can research the universe of leading solutions, recommend the best options and handle all the details of implementation.
4. Increased data control. Who has access to your data? At what points is your data vulnerable? An external partner can work with you to develop a multi-tiered access strategy to put the right data in the right hands while keeping it out of the wrong ones.
5. Reduced burden on the in-house team. In Burwood's experience, working with the right data protection tools can trim program-specific overhead from 20 to 30 percent of administrative time down to a mere 5 percent. As a result, your IT team will have more time to pursue other strategic projects.
Data protection strategies look different in every organization. Whatever strategy you choose, your approach should consider whether you want to handle it all in-house or to work with a partner. You’re going to be in the data protection game for a long time, so it’s best to consider the future as well as your immediate needs.