Organizations Underestimate Severity of Data Loss and Security Threats

By Stefania Viscusi  |  October 20, 2023

Veritas Technologies, a provider of secure multi-cloud data management, has unveiled new research findings that suggest many organizations are underestimating the gravity of threats to their business today. The study, "Data Risk Management: The State of the Market—Cyber to Compliance," surveyed executives and IT practitioners across 13 global markets, and looked at the prevalent risks, their impact, and the strategies organizations can use today to tackle them.

Challenges like rising interest rates and inflation are only the tip of the iceberg for today’s businesses - there is also ransomware and the complexities of managing data across multiple clouds to think about.

While all of this is important, the threat that data loss and security risks could bring to the business is critical - yet not many are adding it high on their list of importance.

When asked whether their organization was currently exposed to risks, nearly half (48%) responded with a confident "no." After presented with a detailed list of individual risk factors, a staggering 97% of respondents then acknowledged the challenge is one that is also confronting their organizations.

The research showed that 15% of the surveyed professionals believe their organizations would not survive another 12 months given their current risk exposure. Another issue is the disconnect between the C-suite executives and the individuals working on the front lines to protect their organizations' data.  Twenty-three percent of senior executives foreseeing their organization's potential demise in the coming year, while only 6% of analysts and technicians shared this outlook.

The survey responses also uncovered which threats were most concerning to their organizations. Data security (46%), economic uncertainty (38%), and emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (36%) are among the top threats many are thinking about today. New technologies like artificial intelligence can be used to detect and respond to malicious activities, but it's also being used by fraudsters to create more sophisticated ransomware attacks.

Of those that have already undergone some of these types of breaches or other data loss risk,  87% admitted negative impacts like reputational and financial harm had occured.

To help mitigate data security risks, many organizations said they have already increased their data protection budgets by as much as 30% over the last 12 months. They are also growing their security team sizes by 21-22 staff members and many are exploring other ways to better protect themselves.

The research findings point to the need for accurate risk assessment and open communication within organizations. Ignoring threats can lead to serious consequences so businesses must understand the risks and be vigilant.

“While an overwhelming majority of respondents ultimately acknowledged the presence of risks and most said they’re taking steps to address them, the data suggests it may not be enough,” said Matt Waxman, senior vice president and general manager for data protection at Veritas.

“If data is like gold dust, guard your treasure. Be prepared with a comprehensive cyber resiliency plan for protecting and recovering your data from edge to core to cloud. Rehearse the plan regularly and recalibrate as needed. Being forewarned is forearmed and by strengthening your data security posture, you can successfully navigate the risks.”

Edited by Greg Tavarez
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