When it comes to tales of woe about mismanaged data, storage leads the way. Market researcher International Data Corp. estimates that some 60 percent of vital corporate data on desktop and notebook PCs remains unprotected. That number is thought to be closer to 80 percent for small-office and home-office PC users.
Taking a slightly different spin on this topic, Strategic Research Corp. claims that 60 percent of corporate data resides outside of managed servers on remote desktops, networks and mobile systems. Further, the consultancy estimates that 75 percent of this "edge data" is either ineffectively protected or not protected at all.
And here is a final sobering statistic to consider: According to the U.S. Department of Labor, 93 percent of businesses that experience a significant data loss will be out of business within five years.
This vast storehouse of vulnerable, unprotected data represents one of the most threatening and intractable of all IT problems. Specifically, data is far more than just storage-it is the lifeblood of almost all businesses. When it fails to flow, the business may be in mortal danger, because it cannot capitalize on its data. Unfortunately, even many businesses that understand the value of their data fail to protect it properly.
And now, the penalties for not having a firm grip on corporate information can be steep indeed. Regulations including the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, Basel II and the EU Data Protection Directive, to name just a few, make it more important than ever for enterprises to track, manage and secure their data.