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User Error is Primary Cause of SaaS Data Loss, Survey Says

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Oops IconIf you’re wondering what has been going wrong with the data retention capabilities of your Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications lately, look in the mirror.
Recent survey findings regarding SaaS adoption, data protection, and compliance in the United States and the United Kingdom discovered that accidental deletion of information is the leading cause of SaaS data loss, ahead of losses caused by malicious insiders and hackers.
The survey by Spanning, an EMC company that provides backup and recovery for SaaS applications, compiled responses from more than 1,000 IT professionals in the two regions and also revealed key concerns about SaaS data protection responsibility, organizational confidence in that protection, and moving data to the cloud. Paramount among the survey’s findings:

  • A wide gap exists between perception and reality in SaaS data protection responsibility. More than half of the respondents in the United States and nearly that many in the United Kingdom say their companies rely on SaaS vendors for application backup and recovery despite the preponderance of data-user errors.
  • Eighty percent of U.S. IT pros are confident in the ability of their companies to secure SaaS application data, whereas only 45 percent of U.K. pros voice similar confidence. The two groups also differ on how to prioritize compliance, data availability, data privacy, and costs. However, both worry more about external attacks than they do accidental deletions, accidental overwrites or migration errors.
  • More than half of the pros in both regions say their companies are deploying or will deploy email and messaging via SaaS in the next 12 months. Next on the list are applications that serve – in order – finance, human resources, and CRM.

“The survey shows misplaced confidence,” said Jeff Erramouspe, vice president and general manager at Spanning. “SaaS providers are not responsible for recovery of data lost due to user error. … It demonstrates the need for cloud-to-cloud backup-and-restore solutions.”
Of the 1,037 survey respondents, 500 were based in the United Kingdom and 537 in the United States. The survey took place in December.

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David Sheets

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