The Resiliency Gap Widens: Failure to Keep Pace with Complexity in Multi-Cloud Environments Leaves Businesses at Risk of Ransomware, Finds Veritas Survey

12 cloud providers used on average to drive business transformation, but complexity can lead to risk unless comprehensive data protection tools are used

SYDNEY, Australia – November 19, 2020 –  Veritas Technologies, a global leader in data protection, availability and insights, today highlighted the challenges that businesses around the globe are facing as they try to protect data stored in complex hybrid multi-cloud environments from the growing threat of ransomware. In its Australian report, Veritas found that only 43% of Australian respondents said that their security has kept pace with their IT complexity, underscoring the need for greater use of data protection solutions that can protect against ransomware across the entirety of increasingly heterogenous environments.

Need to pay ransoms
Typically, if businesses fall foul to ransomware and are not able to restore their data from a backup copy of their files, they may look to pay the hackers responsible for the attack to return their information. The Veritas research showed that companies with greater complexity in their multi-cloud infrastructure were more likely to make these payments. The mean number of clouds deployed by those organisations who paid a part-ransom was 11.47. This dropped to as low as 6.17 for businesses who didn’t pay at all. In fact, only 19% of businesses with fewer than five clouds paid a ransom in full, less than for those (33%) with more than 20 clouds.

Slow recovery times
Complexity in cloud architectures was also shown to have a significant impact on a business’s ability to recover following a ransomware attack. 41% of those businesses with fewer than five cloud providers in their infrastructure saw their business operations disrupted by less than one day. Moreover, 67% of the over-20s took 5 to 10 days to get back on track, with just 7% of the under-fives having to wait so long.

Businesses recognise the challenge
The Veritas research revealed that many businesses are aware of the challenge that they face, with less than half (43%) of respondents believing that their security has kept pace with the complexity in their infrastructure. Two of the top concerns as a result of this complexity, as stated by Australian businesses, is the increased risk of attack due to internal threat including employee error (38%) or external threats, cited by 35% of all participants in the research.

According to Howard Fyffe, Managing Director for Australia and New Zealand at Veritas Technologies, ““The Australian Cyber Security Centre has laid out their Essential Eight baseline strategies to protect against Cyber Security Threats. Number Eight calls out the need for daily backup of all workloads. We’ve heard from our customers that, as part of their response to COVID, they rapidly accelerated their journey to the cloud. Many organisations needed to empower remote working across a wider portfolio of applications than ever before and, with limited access to their on-premise IT infrastructure, turned to cloud deployments to meet their needs. We’re seeing a lag between the rapid expansion of the threat surface that comes with increased multi-cloud adoption, and the deployment of data protection solutions needed to secure them. Our research shows that Essential Eight compliances is critical. Fortunately, some businesses are investing to close that resiliency gap – but unless this is done at greater speed companies will remain vulnerable.”

Need for investment
Over half of Australian businesses (51%) shared that they had increased their budgets for security since the advent of the COVID pandemic. There was a correlation between this elevated level of investment and the ability to restore data in the wake of an attack: 53% of those spending more since the Coronavirus outbreak were able to restore 90% or more of their data, compared with just 43% of those spending less. The results suggest that there is more to be done though, with the average business being able to restore only 82% of its data.

The three most common data protection tools to have been deployed amongst respondents who had avoided paying ransoms were: security and behavioural analytical tools is at 59%, anti-virus software and endpoint security at 57%, same as backup of data (57%).

Global trends
In Australia, 45% of businesses had experienced a ransomware attack and on average, Australian organisations had been hit by 1.14 ransomware attacks, which is below the global average of 1.87.

To read more, please visit our Veritas 2020 Ransomware Resiliency Report microsite.


The 2020 Ransomware Resiliency Report was carried out by Wakefield Research in September 2020 and includes the responses to questions from 2,690 senior IT executives at companies of 1,000 or more employees in Australia, Benelux, China, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Poland, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, South Africa, South Korea, Sweden, Turkey, UAE, UK and US.

About Veritas
Veritas Technologies is a global leader in data protection, availability and insights. Over 80,000 customers—including 87 percent of the Fortune Global 500—rely on us to abstract IT complexity and simplify data management. The Veritas Enterprise Data Services Platform automates the protection and orchestrates the recovery of data everywhere it lives, ensures 24/7 availability of business-critical applications, and provides enterprises with the insights they need to comply with evolving data regulations. With a reputation for reliability at scale and a deployment model to fit any need, Veritas Enterprise Data Services Platform supports more than 800 different data sources, over 100 different operating systems, more than 1,400 storage targets, and more than 60 different cloud platforms. Learn more at Follow us on Twitter at @veritastechllc.


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