Commvault area vice president for ANZ David Rajkovic told iTWire "As Australia and New Zealand organisations continue to evolve into hybrid workplace operations, massive amounts of data is being generated across every business function.
"This data sprawl, is a business-critical problem, especially in the light of the current challenging cybersecurity landscape – robust data management and strict controls on the data environment can help avoid breaches.
"Unfortunately, 60 per cent of the companies we spoke to have experienced some form of a cyberattack over the last 12 months. 80% of those attacked lost data as a result. Firms need to think beyond backup, be proactive and shift to a recovery-ready state so that when an attack occurs, compromised data is 100% recoverable."
Among the other findings:
Data continues to grow rapidly, by an average of 40% in 2020 and a forecast 41% in 2021. However, 80% of that expected growth will be stored in the cloud.
72% of ANZ companies said this additional data is valuable to the business, and that it poses a significantly higher risk if lost, corrupted, or compromised.
Hybrid infrastructure is the default for data storage. 67% of respondents say that the operational benefits comes at a cost in terms of management effort. In particular, 70% of businesses agree that storing data in more places makes it harder to track and manage.
The survey identified five key challenges for businesses.
Data storage optimisation Managing the costs of an ever growing set of data is at the top of the priories list for businesses.
Data classification Incorrectly classified data can be just as difficult to manage as unstructured data.
Data protection Ensuring that only authorised personnel are access any given data set is vital.
eDiscovery Companies around the world need to comply with Freedom of Information acts that can call for specific information about people to be made available on request. Ensuring that systems can provide this data without identifying others is a regulatory necessity.
Compliance The next common data management regulation revolves around the need to keep data within a specific territory.
89% of organisations in Australia and 78% in New Zealand have developed data management plans to take into account these and other issues. But 26% of these plans have not been put into practice, and 41% have not been updated in the last three months.
280 businesses in Australia and New Zealand were surveyed. Among their observations were:
"Our [data] priorities are to ensure we don't suffer from data sprawl. We need to categorise the data, understand where it is, what are the assets, how to best manage them… it's more than just a tech focus, it's a business focus as well." – University of Melbourne
"A year after we moved to Microsoft Teams, we saw our Office 365 data grow by 30TB. It didn't exist a year ago." – Mater Group
"Do we get value from our data? We've dramatically improved over the last two years. At that point, it [data] was piling up, and there was some uncertainty about what we had and where it was. We've worked hard to cleanse the data, and about one year ago, we started to see good improvements." – Norwood