24 October 2003

IT's biggest worry--employee blunders

News: IT's biggest worry--employee blunders: "IT's biggest worry--employee blunders
By Andy McCue

Employee blunders and hardware and software failures are more of a worry for IT directors than the much-hyped threat of terrorism when it comes to disaster recovery planning, according to a new survey.

Half of the 877 IT directors interviewed for the research cited human related issues--accidental errors and malicious behavior--as the main threat to the security of their business. Almost two-thirds also cited hardware failure, while 59 per cent said software failure and viruses are a significant threat.

But only a quarter said terrorism is a major concern, and natural disasters such as floods were hardly mentioned by respondents.

Lindsey Armstrong, senior VP for Europe at Veritas, said in a statement: 'What is surprising about this research is the fact that despite the recent obsessive concern with the threat of international terrorism, technology related threats and potential human errors are still far more in the forefront of people's minds.'

Of major concern almost a quarter admitted to not physically testing their disaster recovery plans at all and of those that do 37 per cent test only once a year. Yet 80 per cent said they had experienced unplanned downtime in the past year, with over a quarter suffering downtime on a quarterly basis or more. And 14 per cent had a system outage of between 24 and 48 hours, with 16 per cent of those suffering major data loss as a result.

Time, lack of budget and disruption to employees were the top three reasons given for not testing recovery plans."

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