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Cyber threats highlighted in EMC global survey

Organizations are failing to appreciate the growing challenges of protecting their data and, as a result, are experiencing the economic impact of data loss, says EMC Corp.


July 11, 2016
By Canadian Security

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New findings from the EMC Global Data Protection Index 2016, an independent study by Vanson Bourne of enterprise backup in 18 countries around the world, revealed that, while businesses have been successful in reducing the impact of the four biggest traditional data loss risks – hardware failure, software failure, power failure, data corruption – they are unprepared for new, emerging threats, which are taking their toll instead.

When compared to the EMC Global Data Protection Index 2014, 13 per cent more businesses experienced data loss or disruption in the last 12 months, costing them an average of US$914,000.

“Our customers are facing a rapidly evolving data protection landscape on a number of fronts, whether it’s to protect modern cloud computing environments or to shield against devastating cyber attacks. Our research shows that many businesses are unaware of the potential impact and are failing to plan for them, which is a threat in itself,” says David Goulden, CEO, EMC Information Infrastructure.

Survey results from the EMC Global Data Protection Index 2016 identified the following three major challenges to modern data protection:

1) Threats to protection data
Nearly one quarter (23 per cent) of businesses surveyed had experienced data loss or unplanned systems disruption due to an external security breach and that number increased to more than one third (36 per cent) when taking internal breaches into account. Businesses are increasingly facing threats not just to their primary data, but also to their backup and protection data. Whether combating cyber extortionists demanding cash to unlock data encrypted by ransomware, or other risks posed to backup and protection data, businesses need to find solutions that put their ‘data of last resort’ beyond harm’s reach.

Steve Duplessie, founder and senior analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group, comments: “Ransomware is dramatically raising the stakes when it comes to cyber security. We’re moving from theft, which is costly, to potential catastrophe. There are forces at play now that aren’t satisfied with just stealing your money, they want to destroy your entity. You can either start taking these threats seriously, or start looking for a hole to crawl into. Ignorance is no longer bliss.”

2) Threats to data in the Cloud
More than 80 pre cent of survey respondents indicated that their organizations will run at least part of eight key business applications in the public cloud in the next two years; yet less than half said they protect cloud data against corruption and less than half against deletion. (Key business applications include email, CRM, ERP, data warehousing, customer support systems, CMS, BI, productivity apps and archiving.)

More than half of respondents said they already run their email solution in the public cloud. And, overall, respondents already had, on average 30 per cent of their IT environments based in the public cloud.

Because SaaS application providers often won’t protect against accidental loss or deletion by an employee, EMC believes it is critical for organizations to include cloud applications in their overall data protection strategies.

3) Evolving protection needs
More than 70 per cent of organizations surveyed are not very confident they could fully recover their systems or data in the event of data loss or unexpected systems downtime. And confidence also suffers when it comes to data center performance, with 73 per cent declaring they are not very confident their solutions will be able to keep pace with the faster performance and new capabilities of flash storage.

To address threats to protection data, EMC is launching a new Isolated Recovery Solutions line to help organizations “air gap” a protection instance of their data from the networked enterprise. Based on EMC VMAX, EMC Data Domain and EMC Professional Services technologies, EMC’s Isolated Recovery Solutions line is designed to enable businesses to create a virtual panic room for their most valuable data, isolating it from networked systems that could be compromised in a cyber attack. If needed, the isolated instance of protection data can be scanned and restored safely within minutes, offering a recovery time objective (RTO) superior to tape-based backup. Isolated Recovery Solutions offerings based on EMC XtremIO, EMC Unity and EMC Isilon technologies will be available in the near future.