Veritas Technologies, leader in the information management has recently presented the Data Hoarders Study, revealing that 82% of the decision makers in the IT sector affirm that the excessive accumulation of data and digital files implies major risks for organizations in terms of financial, security and data management.
Following Data Genomics project, which has analyzed tens of billions of files and their characteristics in many areas of unstructured data of its customers, Veritas has conducted a study to analyze the habits of the decision makers in the IT field and of the professionals in the office area at global level in terms of data storage.
The study requested by Veritas was conducted globally among 10.022 professionals in the office area and decision makers in the IT field, in order to examine how the individuals manage the data. There were revealed significant concerns related to the excessive accumulation of data, 73% of respondents indicating that they store data that could be harmful to their organizations. These include: unencrypted personal data, applications for jobs in other companies, unencrypted secrets of the company and the embarrassing correspondence between the employees.
The study shows that the decision makers from the IT sector are excessively accumulating digital files and keep 54% of all the data they generate. In addition, 41% of all the created digital files remain unchanged for 3 years or more. Although this indicates that the data retention is an obsessive habit common in the organizations, many professionals in the office area (48%) confess that they would not let the time delivery of a project in the hands of a person with such habits. In addition, the respondents said they would throw away their old clothes or give up some weekends rather than delete the files. Almost half of them, 45% would prefer to work in the weekends for 3 months than giving up to their digital files, and 46% would prefer to throw away their clothes instead of their digital files.
The employees are overwhelmed by the huge amount of data
According to this study, the vast majority of the decision makers in the IT sector consider that they are overwhelmed by the size and quantity of the data they keep. About three-quarters of these are frequently allocating time during the daily assigned responsibilities to handle the stored data. In addition, 69% of professionals in the office area affirm that they give up deleting the old digital files because this is too overwhelming.
The employees are trying to determine if the data is important or valuable in the long term. Therefore, 47% of the decision makers in the IT field have heard the employees saying that they are afraid that will have to do again the work related to the stored date and therefore they are not deleting them.
In addition, 86% of the questioned decision makers in the IT sector say that the volume of data stored by the company would increase the response time needed in a case of a security incident. Furthermore, the used data could also be harmful. Despite this, 83% of the questioned decision makers and 62% of the professionals in the office area said they kept the data that could adversely affect the employer or even their own career prospects. These include: unencrypted personal data, applications for jobs in other companies, unencrypted secrets of the company, but also embarrassing correspondence between the employees. The personal files are quite a lot of this retained “garbage”, 96% of the decision makers admitting that even they keep personal useless files.
The habit of excessive accumulation of data could mean a violation of the GDPR regulations
In May 2018, The European Parliament will implement The European General Regulation of Data Protection (GDPR), a series of laws applied at EU level to harmonize the data protection in the region. Focusing on protecting the EU citizens and their data against the wrong use and the questionable security, the consequences of the failure are potentially huge. The maximum fines for non-compliance exceed 22.3 million dollars (20 million euros) or up to 4% of the global turnover.
“In the digital age of today, any organization is trying to cope with the challenges of the exponential data growth. Therefore, the professionals in the office area and in the IT departments have responded by keeping the data for ‘potential’ use in the future,” says Chris Talbott, Solutions Leader at Veritas Technologies. “To make the situation worse, the employees download everything from music and personal photos to shopping lists on the same servers, which could lead to serious problems of the brand identity, heavy fines and regulatory investigations if are not administered correctly by the IT department. ”
- This study was conducted by Wakefield Research on behalf of Veritas Technologies in 13 countries .
About Data Genomics Index, Veritas 2016
Data Genomics Index is the first reference value for data, detailing exactly the real areas – from compiling the file type and the average age distribution, to the individual files proportions. In 2015, Veritas analyzed tens of billions of files and their characteristics of unstructured data of its customers, to better understand the studied behavior. In this analysis there were taken into consideration more than 8,000 of the most popular file extensions. Overall, these data are a representative sample of the average file system of a particular client.
About Veritas Technologies
Veritas Technologies is a company that enables the organizations to exploit the power of their information, with management information solutions to support the largest and the most complex areas globally. Veritas works with organizations of all sizes, including 86% of the companies included in the Fortune 500 top, improving the data availability and offering information to support the competitive advantage. (www.veritas.com)