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Press Release

Half of UK SMEs have experienced vital data loss in the last five years, says report

Wed 27 Mar 2024

Latest research by internet services provider, Beaming, found nearly half of the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have experienced data loss or compromised access to crucial company or customer information within the past five years. 

This alarming trend has inflicted financial damages exceeding £5.3 billion ($6.6 billion) on British businesses, underscoring the urgent need for robust data backup and business continuity measures.

The study called ‘Data Backup & Business Continuity: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’ was conducted as part of the lead-up to World Backup Day on 31 March. The report emphasised the disproportionate impact of data loss on companies housing 10 to 250 employees. 

Financial penalties, the costs associated with data recovery, and a decline in productivity during downtime contribute to the hefty £5.3 billion ($6.6 billion) loss.

Finance sector entities, including service providers and accountants, emerged as the most vulnerable, with 59% acknowledging data losses between 2019 and 2023. Manufacturing firms, while fewer in number, faced the steepest costs per incident, with median expenses surpassing £60,000 ($75,744).

Managing Director at Beaming, Sonia Blizzard, stressed the criticality of a sound data backup strategy in safeguarding against a spectrum of threats, from cybercrime to natural disasters. 

“A robust data backup strategy is fundamental to risk management and business continuity planning. It safeguards critical data, supports recovery efforts, and helps maintain a business’s resilience and reputation in the face of these challenges,” said Blizzard.

Despite a marked improvement in backup efforts compared to five years ago, many businesses still fall short of implementing comprehensive backup solutions. 

The research uncovered that only a quarter of UK businesses adhere to optimal backup practices, such as offsite backups and data encryption. Conversely, approximately half resort to inadequate methods, like infrequent backups or storing backups in the same physical location as the original data, rendering them susceptible to simultaneous loss.

Blizzard advocated for a paradigm shift towards best practices in data management, highlighting the significance of consistent, secure, and redundant backup strategies in ensuring business resilience. 

“Implementing a solid data backup strategy is essential for business continuity. By following best practices, businesses can significantly enhance their ability to recover from data loss or system failures and ensure continuous operation in the face of unforeseen events,” added Blizzard.

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