Even though data loss is still high among businesses across all verticals, there’s been an increase in the adoption of cloud-based data protection. Some organizations are stalling, however, to make a move.

Cloud adoption, in general, has risen over the years, to the point where cloud computing technology is being used somewhere in most organizations. Ninety-six percent of businesses are using the cloud in one way or another, according to the RightScale 2018 State of the Cloud Report. While types of cloud computing services and solutions vary, many businesses are using cloud computing technologies to protect themselves from the increasing threat landscape. Threats continue to be a concern for CIOs.

Downtime — no matter the length or reason — can negatively impact companies in several ways, including limiting employee productivity, limiting potential opportunities, and losing or damaging data. More than 40 percent of all size businesses reported having a period of downtime so far in 2019, according to the fifth annual Unitrends Cloud and Disaster Recovery Survey. More than 400 respondents from organizations in numerous industries took part in the survey. To prevent these potentially damaging business outcomes, many companies are turning to the cloud for solutions.

No matter if you’re using cloud computing technologies for data protection and loss prevention or not, below are a few data points every business should know.

Cloud as a tool in data protection strategies

Many businesses today are using the cloud as a tool in data protection strategies. Those that are not are more than likely going to be within the next twelve months.

Most organizations (60 percent) are using cloud features (such as short-term data storage; cloud archiving; and disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS)) as backup locations, according to Unitrends’ data. The remaining 40 percent plan to adopt cloud-based data protection within the next year. Despite continued efforts by IT security professionals to educate businesses on the importance of using the cloud in data protection strategies, the other half (nearly 50 percent) are sticking to their guns. They are refusing to implement any cloud-based tool in their data protection strategies.

They are, however, focusing on two key areas when designing a strategy.

The roles of off-site data and file storage in cloud-based data protection

Not all cloud-based solutions for data protection are looked at equally by businesses.

The most widely used capability for the cloud in data protection is off-site data and file storage. Eighty-four percent of businesses reported using the cloud to store data or backups, according to survey respondents. Despite the popularity of using the cloud as a storage tool, some companies are still skeptical — and they don’t have plans to jump on the bandwagon anytime soon.

Fewer than 10 percent of businesses aren’t using the cloud for file and data storage or have no plans to add it this year, according to the survey’s results.

The good news is that many companies are taking data protection seriously. The bad news is that many of them still aren’t testing their recovery capabilities as often as they should.

Still, not enough businesses are testing recovery capabilities

The purpose of backing up data is to recover it when something goes wrong. If you aren’t checking your recovery capabilities, you are putting yourself in a vulnerable situation. You are not alone.

The survey results show there has been a small decrease in the percentage of organizations that test their recovery capabilities once a year or less from 2016 (59%) to 2019 (55%), but there’s hope.

Annually, 12 percent more organizations test recovery capabilities compared to organizations that tested four years ago.

Even though there have been new technologies introduced, data loss remains high. This loss could be the result of decreasing IT budgets and increasing complexity within IT infrastructures. If you’re running into these issues, consider hiring an IT consulting firm in your area to ensure your data is protected, and downtime is limited.