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Cyber attacks now the top cause of data loss

cyber attack

Cyber attacks have overtaken human error as the top cause of data loss with ransomware now the most common form of threat to business

New research by Databarracks reveals that over half of organisations suffered cyber attack and internal breaches as a cause of data loss in 2022.

The findings come from Databarracks’ annual Data Health Check, a survey of 400 IT decision makers that focused on themes of ransomware, cyber, backup, disaster recovery and business continuity.

“Data loss caused by cyber attack has been increasing year on year since we began the Data Health Check in 2008,” said Barnaby Mote, managing director of Databarracks. “We’ve watched cyber attacks go from minor threat to where we are today as the leading cause of data loss for organisations.”

“The seriousness of the situation cannot be overstated. The other causes of data loss have not gone away. IT teams are still dealing with similar numbers of incidents caused by human error and hardware or software failure. The growth is in addition to these causes. It is a significant burden because recovery from cyber-related data loss is typically far more difficult and time consuming.”

Cyber attack protection

Organisations can protect themselves from cyber related data loss by improving their defences to prevent the attack occurring and secondly by improving their ability to respond and recover if they do suffer data loss.

“Your first line of defence is your staff. It’s essential that employees are trained and practice good cyber hygiene. We found that almost a quarter of organisations have not carried out cyber security training in the last year.

“Review your disaster recovery plans to make sure they are up to date and equipped to deal with the task at hand. Cyber incidents are very different from traditional causes of data loss. Look specifically at the frequency of your backups and the number of versions of data you keep to minimise both downtime and data loss. Growth in cyber-related data loss will only continue so it is critical organisations are able to respond effectively.”

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