In advance of World
Backup Day on March 31, Acronis today announced that its
2019 World Backup Day Survey into the data protection habits of
users around the globe revealed that 65.1 percent of the consumers
surveyed said either they or a family member lost data as a result of an
accidental deletion, hardware failure or software problem – a jump of
29.4 percentage points from last year.
Yet for the first time in its four-year history, Acronis’ World
Backup Day Survey also showed that nearly all consumers (92.7
percent) are backing up their computers – an increase of more than 24.1
percent from last year and the single largest year-over-year increase.
“At first glance, those two findings might seem completely incompatible
– how can more data be lost if nearly everyone is backing up,” said
James Slaby, Director, Cyber Protection at Acronis. “Yet there are hints
at why these numbers look this way in the survey. People are using more
devices and accessing their data from more places than ever before,
which creates more opportunities to lose data. They might back up their
laptop, but if they didn’t back up the smartphone they just forgot in a
cab, they’re still losing data.”
World Backup Day Survey targeted users in the U.S., U.K., Australia,
Germany, Poland, Spain, France, Japan, Singapore, Bulgaria, and
Switzerland, polling consumers and, for the first time, business users.
The increasing number of CEOs,
CIOs and other executives losing their jobs as a result of data
breaches, online attacks, and IT missteps prompted Acronis to
incorporate their data concerns and practices into the study.
The addition of business users revealed several differences in how and
why consumers and corporations protect their digital assets.
Only 7% of Consumers Don’t Even Try to Protect Their Data
The number of devices being used by consumers continues to climb, with
68.9 percent of households reporting they have three or more devices –
including computers, smartphones, and tablets. That’s up 7.6 percent
Given the amount of data used and the stories about people losing their
homes to fires and floods, as well as data losses due to high-profile ransomware
attacks and security breaches, the increase in reported backups
suggests consumers are at least trying to protect their data. This year,
only 7 percent of consumers said they never back
up, while nearly a third of last year’s respondents (31.4 percent)
did not back up their personal data.
They also report valuing their data more, with 69.9 percent reporting
they would spend more than $50 to retrieve lost files, photos, videos,
etc. Last year, fewer than 15 percent would have paid that much.
To protect their data, 62.7 percent of consumers keep it nearby, backing
up to a local external hard drive (48.1 percent) or to a hard drive
partition (14.6 percent). Only 37.4 percent are using the cloud or a
hybrid approach of cloud and local backups.
The lack of cloud adoption presents another apparent disconnect.
Consumers overwhelmingly said that having access to data is the greatest
benefit of creating backups, with a significant majority selecting
“fast, easy access to backed up data, wherever I am” above all other
features. Yet just over a third of them back up to the cloud, which
would give them the ability to retrieve files from anywhere.
The type of data consumers are most concerned with losing seems to be
contacts, passwords, and other personal information (45.8 percent),
followed by media files like photos, videos, music, and games (38.1
Fewer than half of consumers are aware of the online attacks that
threaten their data, such as ransomware (46 percent), cryptomining
malware (53 percent) and the social engineering attacks (52 percent)
used to spread malware. Education on these dangers seems to be slow, as
the number of consumers who know about ransomware only increased 4
percent since last year.
Companies Aggressively Protect Data in the Cloud
Since an hour of downtime costs an estimated $300,000 in lost business,
corporate users clearly know the value of their data. And since CEOs and
C-level executives are being held more accountable for their data
protection and security postures in the wake of a rash of high-profile
incidents, leadership is taking a more active interest.
That helps explain why the business users who responded to Acronis’
World Backup Day Survey are already prepared to protect their files,
apps, and systems – with a significant majority citing safety and
security of their data as the benefits that are most important to them,
ranking them first and second, respectively.
The 2019 survey is the first time companies were included in the annual
poll, and the responses came from businesses of all sizes – including
32.7 percent small businesses with under 100 employees, 41.0 percent
medium businesses with between 101 and 999 employees, and 26.3 percent
large enterprises employing 1,000 people or more.
Regardless of the company size, the majority make protecting
their data a priority by backing up their company data monthly (35.1
percent), weekly (24.8 percent), or daily (25.9 percent). As a result,
68.7 percent said they did not suffer a data loss event during the past
year that resulted in downtime.
These companies were also clearly aware of the latest risks to their
data, which is why they reported being either concerned or highly
concerned about ransomware
(60.6 percent), cryptojacking (60.1 percent), and social engineering
attacks (61.0 percent).
In practice, businesses of all sizes rely on cloud backups, with 48.3
percent using the cloud exclusively and 26.8 percent using a combination
of local and cloud
Given their data
protection concerns of safety and security, their reliance on the
cloud is understandable. That’s because for safety (“reliable backups so
data always available for recovery”), an offsite cloud backup ensures
their data survives even if a fire, flood or natural disaster destroys
their facilities. In terms of security (“data protected against online
threats and cybercriminals”), the cloud provides a buffer that such
malware attacks have difficulty breaching.
Defending Against New Malware
As modern threats to data continue to evolve at breathtaking speed, both
individuals and companies need to look for secure data protection
solutions that provide the full range of protection – including flexible
local, hybrid, and cloud-based backups and active anti-malware solutions.
Only Acronis backup solutions – Acronis
Backup for businesses and Acronis
True Image for personal use – include an active, artificial
intelligence-based defense against ransomware that detects and stops
ransomware in real time and automatically restores any affected files.
The technology is so effective it stopped 400,000 ransomware attacks
The latest version of this integrated defense, called Acronis
Active Protection, was recently enhanced to recognize and stop
cryptomining malware as well. Added in the fall of 2018, the updated
tens of thousands of cryptomining attacks within the first month it
Cyber Protection Recommendations for World Backup Day
Whether you are concerned about personal files or securing your
company’s business continuity, Acronis has four simple recommendations
to help protect your data:
Always create backups of important data. Keep copies of the
backup both locally (so it’s available for fast, frequent recoveries)
and in the cloud (to guarantee you have everything if a fire, flood,
or disaster hits your facilities).
Ensure your operating system and software are current. Relying
on an outdated OS or app means it lacks the bug fixes and security
patches that help block cybercriminals from gaining access to your
Beware of suspicious email, links, and attachments. Most virus
and ransomware infections are the result of social engineering
techniques that trick unsuspecting individuals into opening infected
email attachments or clicking on links to websites that host malware.
Install anti-virus software and enable automatic updates so
your system is protected against common, well-known malware strains.
Windows user should confirm that their Windows Defender is turned on
Find out more about how you can protect your data at www.acronis.com/en-us/promo/world-backup-day/.
Read more about the survey results here: www.acronis.com/en-us/blog/posts/world-backup-day-2019-survey-results.
Acronis sets the standard for cyber
protection and hybrid
cloud storage through its innovative backup,
file sync and share solutions. Enhanced by its artificial
intelligence-based ransomware defense, blockchain-based
authentication and unique hybrid-cloud
architecture, Acronis protects all data in any environment,
including physical, virtual, cloud, mobile workloads and applications. Founded
in Singapore in 2003, today Acronis is trusted by more than 5
million consumers and 500,000 businesses worldwide, including 79
of the top 100 most valuable brands.