ESG's Christophe Bertrand discusses key findings from ESG Research on Cloud Data Protection.
Read the related ESG Blog: Ransomware and SaaS Mishaps in the News Again…Did I mention you need a backup?
Hello. My name is Christophe Bertrand, and I am a senior analyst at ESG focused on data protection. ESG recently conducted research targeting 370 well qualified IT leaders in North America familiar with or responsible for data protection technology decisions that may leverage cloud services as part of their solution.
The results include organizations in the mid-market and the enterprise. Multiple industry verticals were surveyed, including manufacturing, business services, financial, health care, and education, amongst others. The usage of cloud data protection services has hit the stratosphere in the past few years and has become mainstream.
Organizations use a variety of solutions that leverage cloud and are doing more of it. Sixty-one percent of respondents use cloud as a backup target when it was only 25% who did in 2016, only a few years ago. Another interesting set of examples include backup-as-a-service and disaster recovery-as-a-service which have also seen significant progression in the past few years.
Cloud and data protection are intertwined and will likely continue to be for many years to come. Taking a closer look at IT and decision-makers, we observed that IT operations is the gatekeeper for cloud data protection. This data confirms IT operation's increasing role in cloud data protection, whether it's leveraging to public cloud as an extension of data protection strategies or protecting VMs or data in public cloud infrastructure and application services.
It should also be noted that backup and storage administrators remain very key influencers in the process. So, why use cloud, and what benefits do organizations reap from their investments in cloud-based data protection, and what are the concerns IT professionals have expressed? In a nutshell, it's about money, results, and security.
Our research shows that costs and SLAs are the most commonly realized benefits of cloud-based data protection, while security and data recovery are top concerns. Virtual machines are everywhere and play a very key role in supporting IT and business initiatives, and these machines often live in the cloud. When protecting data stored within virtual machines running on public cloud infrastructure or cloud VMs, we asked our respondents to what locations or destinations.
No clear winner emerges. Organizations will leverage public cloud services, data protection service providers, or even their own data center. It really looks as though organizations don't want to put all of their data protection eggs in the same basket. One of the most interesting findings in this survey is the big disconnect that exists when it comes to SaaS data protection or protecting applications that are consumed as a service in the cloud.
Think collaboration tools, email, and CRM type of applications. These have massively replaced on-premises deployments in the past few years due to their ease of deployment and consumption. However, there are misconceptions. Remember, you are always responsible for your data and its protection even if you are not in direct control of it anymore as you were before when you had it on premises.
A staggering third of respondents told us that SaaS-based applications do not need to be backed up. Is there confusion between service availability and backup responsibility in people's minds? Let's be clear, SaaS vendors are not responsible for your data the way you are from a compliance and data governance perspective. If you don't have a backup and/or an archive in place, you are exposed.
As a matter of fact, there are many ways to lose SaaS data. Our research indicates that the service itself and user error are actually reported to be the leading causes. This sobering news should make everyone reconsider their SaaS data protection. This is all that we have time for today but stay tuned as we will further unpack this great data in the next data protection research videos.
Please check the ESG portal for more details on this research. Thank you for your time.