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PRISM International Annual Conference 2013

So I just got back from the PRISM International Annual Conference 2013 in Bonita Springs, FL. I know what you’re thinking: another conference in Florida means more time at the beach and less time hearing about records management.

The truth is that while I did see my share of sunshine (I flew in on the weekend before the conference), I actually did attend the sessions and came away with some new perspectives on a number of industry topics.

PRISM conference bonita springs florida

Hey, the PRISM conference doesn’t have to be ALL about data management issues, right?

This year’s PRISM (Professional Records and Information Service Management) Conference focused on a variety of industry topics from disaster recovery lessons learned from Hurricane Sandy to the ongoing challenges of protecting consumer personal information, as well as the numerous safeguards companies must have in place to help do so.

There were sessions dedicated to the recently released HIPAA final rule and the best practices for handling and transporting both hard copy and electronic records. As always, I came home with a few new techniques to review as well as the validation of The Data Vault’s current policies and procedures.

One change to the past few conferences was the increased amount of attention given towards data protection, most of which was due to the growing influence of (caution: buzzword alert) “the cloud.”

While there is no debate that cloud computing continues to take over the world of IT, there is still a great deal of mystery and even debate on its influence in the world of data protection. I attended three different sessions dedicated to data protection and also had the opportunity to sit on a panel of industry peers where the audience had the chance to ask questions on industry trends and best practice solutions. Inevitably, the topic of the cloud came up in every session and it was very interesting and at times entertaining to hear the varying opinions from others in the industry.

One of the biggest debates involved people’s thoughts on the current and future role of tape as a backup medium, taking into consideration the influence of backing up to disk or cloud options. While no one debates the fact that cloud has some very useful applications and a definite role in the world backup data storage and disaster recovery, there is still a great deal to be said about the advantages of tape as well.

In fact, the consistent sentiment was that backup tape is not dead but it is changing. While a few companies out there may be moving solely to cloud, most are looking at a hybrid option which utilizes both cloud and tape for data back up. For example, a company can back up mission critical data to the cloud for quick restore but still house archive and legacy data on tape as it is typically more cost effective and has a longer shelf life.

At the end of the day I genuinely feel that there are true benefits of both cloud and tape backup options and I walked away very pleased to work for a company that has service offerings for both. It is another example of The Data Vault’s versatility as a service provider and allows us to cater to the needs and desires of our clients.

I’m glad that I got the opportunity to attend PRISM this year and am already looking forward to hearing the hot topics at next year’s event. Of course the fact that PRISM 2014 is in California doesn’t hurt either!

Michael Payton
Operations Manager

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