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Backup solutions not a guarantee from data loss: study

Veronica C. Silva | April 3, 2013
Study suggests regular maintenance and update of backup solutions to avoid problems.

A recent study of the use of backup solutions reveal that while companies have installed backup solutions, some of these solutions are not updated. The result: some data loss.

The study was conducted by Kroll Ontrack, a provider of data recovery and e-discover solutions. It involved 600 customers of Kroll's Ontrack Data Recovery from North America, Europe and the Asia Pacific regions who have experienced personal and business data loss.

The study revealed that 60 percent of respondents said they use their backup solution, yet, they have also experienced data loss. This is because some of their solutions are not foolproof. Some say their backup solution is not set on automatic mode while some solutions, such as the external hard drive backup, are not connected always.

External hard drive backup is still the most popular backup solution with 60 percent of respondents saying this is their backup solution. Another 15 percent said they use the cloud for backup and another 15 percent use tape solution. 

As a result, one-third of respondents experienced personal data loss while another two-thirds have lost data in their business.

The study also noted that some backup software failed while in some cases, the data was lost before a scheduled automated backup.

Kroll Ontrack said these survey results should serve as a wake-up call to companies and individuals to make sure that they are diligently monitoring and verifying their backup systems.

"Leveraging a data backup solution is critical for any business or individual protecting against data loss," said Abhik Mitra, data recovery product manager, Kroll Ontrack. "However, as our recent global survey results demonstrate, even a reputable cloud or external media solution does not always provide predictable results. An effective backup solution hinges on the user or IT administrator attentively validating that the solution is functioning as expected and verifying that the backup is complete."

The good news, however, is that some respondents have learned from their bad experience. The survey also showed that after experiencing data loss, 87 percent of respondents said they would proactively seek a reliable backup solution. For those who said they're using external hard disk backup, 25 percent said they're going to look into cloud solutions. Others who have learned their lessons, however, face constraints in looking for backup solutions because they lack resources, such as time and funds, to look for a suitable backup solution. 


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