UAE cloud migration slows as IT costs rise – study

One of the key reasons was found to be UAE organisations’ “data hoarding culture”



UAE businesses are failing to meet their targets for cloud migration on the back of rising IT costs, a new survey has found.

The annual survey by Veritas Technologies found that while last year’s prediction of cloud storage uptake was 55 per cent, the actual uptake this year stood at 45 per cent.

One of the key reasons was found to be UAE organisations’ “data hoarding culture”, with 88 per cent of total company data including dark (unclassified) and redundant, obsolete or trivial (ROT) data.

Overall, the survey highlighted three main issues currently slowing down adoption of cloud data storage in the UAE –

• The rates of deletion have stalled overall between 2018 and 2019 with only 15 per cent of organisations deleting data weekly. The public sector was found to have a strong discipline of monthly deletion, making them one of the most effective sectors

• Up to 49 per cent of UAE organisations use either tape or primary disk devices for storage

• Approximately two thirds (63 per cent) of organisations “waste money” on orphaned data, while only 33 per cent have a regular process to reclaim and repurpose orphaned capacity

The report also found that because of these issues, many of the UAE organisations surveyed are running “high levels of risk” around ransomware, with approximately a quarter of businesses saying it would take them a week to recover from a ransomware attack.

A total of 55 per cent of businesses are prepared for ransomware attacks and have backup and recovery plans in place, claiming to be able to resolve an attack in 24 hours or less.

According to the report, retail and consumer organisations are most prepared for ransomware, citing the ability to recover data within just two hours, while public sector and utilities companies said recovering data could take up to a week.

“This could pose serious risk to vital governmental services and utilities in the UAE,” the report said.

Johnny Karam, vice president of Emerging Markets at Veritas, said: “Data is central to the digital transformation in the UAE and yet, our study reveals that businesses are crying out for a better and simpler way to manage their data in order to reap the rewards of the cloud.

“Unfortunately, the UAE businesses surveyed fail to realise the true potential of the cloud because of poor data management, creating a vicious circle of rising IT costs and missed opportunities. Embracing a hybrid cloud model will enable businesses to better manage their budgets while benefitting from improved backup and ransomware protection capabilities.

“In addition, prioritising the management and protection of valuable, mission-critical data, while illuminating dark and deleting ROT data, will help boost operational efficiencies and business transformation.”