SMBs' Whole Businesses Threatened by Lousy Backup

By Doug Barney

Backup is a thankless job. No one pats you on the back when it is done well, but they sure will offer a swift kick if things go wrong.

Large shops know how critical data protection is, and usually invest what it takes to do backup right. SMBs are a different matter, as shown in a new survey the “2013 State of Cloud Backup” sponsored by Intronis.

The survey of 350 IT providers finds that SMBs all too often don’t buy proper backup and disaster recovery till after they have a data disaster.

Here is what else the survey found, Intronis said:

  • “34 percent of SMBs adopt cloud-based BDR to improve their data protection and business continuity.
  • 20 percent of SMBs expect the technology to improve the reliability of their IT systems overall.
  • 30 percent of all data stored in the cloud is made up of files used for backup and recovery, followed by user files at 28 percent and line-of-business applications at 19 percent.”

One big problem is that even if an SMB has backup, if it uses tape there is a good chance that not only the backup failed, but by definition the restoration will fail as well. This is one of the issues driving the move to cloud backup where the service provider guarantees the backup works, and the data will be there when it comes time to restore.

Unfortunately too few SMBs avail themselves of cloud backup, Forrester Research finds that a mere 5 percent of these SMBs use any backup service.

“Data loss happens every day and can come in all forms, from hardware failures to user error and natural disasters,” said Neal Bradbury, co-founder and vice president of channel development for Intronis. “SMBs and IT service providers should think of cloud BDR services as insurance for the company’s data—no business should be without it.”

The news is not all grim. It turns out that 56 percent if those queried said backup is one of their bestselling services and backup revenues will grow over 20 percent in the next year.

Image via Shutterstock

“The fact that more than 40 percent of IT service providers who sell to SMBs across North America are still reacting to their clients’ need for cloud-based backup and recovery is astounding – especially in today’s data-driven, technology-reliant marketplace,” says Lawrence Walsh, president and CEO of The 2112 Group which conducted the research for Intronis. “BDR is a must for businesses of all sizes. IT service providers are missing substantial opportunities to grow their businesses by waiting for SMBs to ask for cloud BDR solutions. IT service providers need to take a more active sales stance on backup solutions.”

A Brighter Horizon?

While Intronis sees the glass as a bit half empty, rival TwinStrata sees things differently, finding that customers are more trusting of the cloud for storage. In a TwinStrata survey, 84 percent said they use or plan to use cloud storage. This was more than any other cloud technology asked. TwinStrata pointed out that its survey base was generally inclined towards the cloud.

Cloud storage is growing in part because of its scalability. Estimates have it have that storage densities are growing some 20 percent a year. Meanwhile, Gartner estimates that demand for capacity is growing more like 40-60 percent.

And in the company’s recent Forecast: Public Cloud Services, Worldwide, 2011-2017, 1Q13 Update report, it found that “worldwide Cloud System Infrastructure Services (IaaS) Storage for end-user spending to grow at a 31 percent Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR), from an estimated $1.7 billion in 2013 to a forecast $4.9 billion in 2017.”





MSPToday Editor at Large

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