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The top 3 causes of data loss in business

Hurricane season in the U.S. reminds organizations of all shapes and sizes to reviewand testtheir IT disaster recovery (DR) plans, from securing temporary office space on higher ground to protecting their most precious commodity, their data.

09 / 29 / 2021
3 minute read
Data loss

The bad news? The greatest threats to your company’s business continuity—including your data—aren’t isolated to July through November. Critical infrastructure can go down any time of year for reasons ranging from power outages and network failures to security breaches and human error.

Read on for the most common causes of data loss and downtime and how to protect and prepare your IT infrastructure all year.

The top 3 causes of data loss and downtime

1. Human error

Human error is the top cause for data loss and compromise. According to an Uptime Institute survey, up to 75% of data center failures are caused by human error. Additionally, more than 30% of IT services and data center operators experience downtime or severe degradation of service. Ten percent of the survey respondents reported that their most recent incident cost them more than $1 million. 

2. Ransomware

As data protection gets more sophisticated, so too do those bad actors intent on stealing your data and disrupting your business operations. Malware, breaches, phishing and other cyberattacks have been on the rise for years, but the dramatic explosion in ransomware attacks and the cost to recover from them is shaking the IT security landscape.

In “The State of Ransomware 2021” study, Sophos reported that in the last year the average bill for rectifying a ransomware attack, considering downtime, people time, device cost, network cost, lost opportunity, ransom paid, etc., was $1.85 million. Gartner predicts that by 2025, at least 75% of IT organizations will face one or more attacks.

3. Natural disasters

Increasingly volatile weather events due to climate change are putting businesses and their data at higher risk, from hurricanes and floods to tornadoes and wildfires. Consider the numbers:

  • The 2021 Atlantic hurricane season is well underway, and atmospheric and oceanic conditions remain conducive for an above-average hurricane season, according to the annual mid-season update issued by NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center.
  • Rainfall is up 20%, increasing the risk and severity of flooding. Flooding can cause emergency systems to fail and prevent staff from getting to their data centers.
  • According to NOAAthe month of August averages more than 9,000 wildfires—and nearly two million acres of damage.

Don’t be scared, be prepared

Critical infrastructure can go down any time of year, but you can avoid data loss with proper planning and a disaster recovery partner.

Flexential has extensive expertise in disaster recovery and a full stack of services to protect your data and applications against disasters. Contact us to learn how Flexential can help your organization prepare for the unpredictable.

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