Over the last year, the data protection space faced a swath of challenges, compelling vendors to organically and inorganically evolve to meet rapidly transforming business needs. Ransomware attacks soared, with all sectors experiencing a 118% increase in attacks, data protection as a service (DPaaS) deployment rose to dominate many business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) strategies, and the impacts from climate change on business operations became clear as states like California intentionally turned off power lines to prevent wildfires.
The year ahead will test many businesses, IT organisations, and data protection vendors as threats to business data become increasingly pervasive. Here are Arcserve’s top BCDR predictions for 2020.
Ransomware reaches epidemic proportions
Over the next year, we should expect cyber-attacks to escalate, with cyber criminals taking a more tailored approach to disseminate malware, and in many cases, targeting the data backups themselves.
Companies across all industries need to understand that ransomware is a ‘when’ not ‘if’ scenario, and better prepare for this continued onslaught of cybercrime. Instead of relying solely on security solutions, IT leaders must take a two-pronged approach to ransomware mitigation to avoid choosing between data loss or paying a ransom – and in many cases, both. This means not only making investments in more advanced threat detection and remediation software, but also ensuring that data backup and disaster recovery protocols have entered the modern era.
In 2020, more businesses will seek out vendors who offer an integrated approach to cybersecurity and disaster recovery with solutions that combine the two. In doing so, leaders will move away from segmenting threat prevention and data protection to assure mitigation from cyber-attacks, no matter the level of sophistication or target. Further, IT teams will invest more time into making backup plans known to business leaders by more clearly documenting who is responsible for what if their organisation were to fall victim to an attack.
Cloud strategies reach full maturity
Migrations to the cloud will only continue to increase. But, now professionals will weigh whether to deploy hybrid and multi-cloud strategies, and look for new ways to overcome the obstacles and complexities associated with each – especially as SaaS-based solutions become more prevalent. Many companies are struggling to determine which data and applications should be in the cloud versus on-premises, learn the nuances between varying hyperscaler subscriptions, features and functionalities, and ensure their IT teams have the proper training and skills to manage these environments.
In 2020, we should expect organisations to dedicate more resources to deploy these infrastructures successfully, and standardise a security model that works across different vendors to reduce gaps, avoid misconfigurations, and ensure critical data, workloads and applications remain resilient. And, to match the pace at which organisations are moving to the cloud, we will likely see an emergence of offerings that aim to make it easier for companies to migrate their critical data. These solutions will deliver capabilities to ensure there is no impact to production systems while the migration occurs so organisations don’t need to suffer any unnecessary downtime.
Businesses proactively prepare for epic storms
As weather events become more severe, businesses need to adjust their disaster recovery plans to better anticipate those that could halt their operations and IT services. In the upcoming year, disaster recovery and business continuity specialists will employ DR techniques, such as California’s planned power shut offs, to prevent climate change from causing extended outages, data loss and financial damages. And, they will begin documenting these prevention tactics, particularly in areas where severe weather is more likely, to enable business leaders to prepare for these scenarios ahead of time.
“While it’s clear there are several internal and external factors that could impact business continuity, the fact remains that enterprises are working toward making necessary investments to keep their corporate data safe,” said Oussama El-Hilali, CTO at Arcserve.
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