Wakefield Survey Sheds Light on Data Backup

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How often do you back up your computer data?  A startling new study, released by Wakefield Research and Carbonite, Inc., asserts that more than one-third of Americans do not back up their computers or have failed to do so in more than a year.  What’s more, 51% of Americans have experienced the horrifying trauma of a computer crash.  What happened to the old adage, “fool me once….?”

The full scheme of the statistics brought to light by the survey of 1,000+ adults was nothing short of jaw dropping. 50% of those surveyed responded that they would prefer to lose all of their annual vacation time than experience a computer crash.  More than a quarter of those surveyed claimed they would pay as much as needed to get their electronic files and computer information back in the event that their hard drive quit.

Furthermore, the study shed light onto the issue of how trusting computer users are in this country. Approximately 8 out of every 10 Americans (82%) keep electronic files only, without any form of back-up, including paper copies.  Among the most common digital data stored were music (55%), addresses (28%) and financial documents (22%).  Ironically, the study also revealed that the value of the content stored on an individual’s computer was typically worth more than the computer itself.

CEO of Carbonite, Inc., David Friend, was quoted with the following: “It’s interesting to contrast the way people insure their treasured possessions, like their home or their car, with the ways in which they leave their often irreplaceable digital assets unprotected.” Interesting, or downright reckless?

While the study focuses on individuals and personal computers, it highlights a general naivety that seems to pervade our culture even four decades after the technological marvels were first mainstreamed.  With the widespread use of electronic files, it’s utterly crucial for this gullibility not to make its way into the corporate pipeline.  A company is only as good as its weakest link and it’s absolutely essential to make sure that the weak link is not in your computer’s back-up and security system.  Not only is this critical to a firm’s survival, but also to keep them inline with industry regulations and out of the how waters of the legal system.