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Opaque Data Archives Cause Retention Problems

New research reveals that despite the large volume of legacy data stored on archive tapes, many information technology departments don’t have strong plans for managing it, making their companies vulnerable to compliance and regulatory risks.

In the report by Kroll Ontrack, more than 30% of the 700 IT administrators surveyed from corporate and service provider shops around the world didn’t know what specific information was stored within their tape archives – even though 1/3 of them get daily or weekly requests for information stored there that is critical to e-discovery or internal audit. This presents obvious concerns from a legal perspective, as the modern regulatory environment has little tolerance for missing data.

“Most organizations are required by law to keep and maintain access to regulated data for a designated period of time. Therefore, maintaining access to legacy data and having the ability to quickly respond to data requests is crucial,” Todd Johnson, vice president of data and storage technologies at Kroll Ontrack, said of the study’s findings. “Overstrained IT resources and the fact that nearly one-third of organizations struggle to even know or understand the data stored on their company archive or backup tapes is a real challenge and could put an organization at risk if they are unable to produce in a timely manner.”

This study underscores the importance of organizations developing, implementing, and ensuring compliance with an effective retention schedule; allowing them to destroy information when the legal and regulatory requirements for it have been met. It also reduces storage costs and demonstrates that it’s a routine part of the organization’s business functions, providing the basis for defensible deletion of legacy tapes and backups.

To learn more about best practices, please download our Information Governance 101 whitepaper or contact us with your questions! The Data Vault has been helping organizations find effective solutions since 1984, and our team of experts can evaluate your needs to find the right fit.

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