Business and IT leaders have wide-ranging responsibilities, many of which can be defined in terms of risk reduction and mitigation. Organizations that can identify and control exposure and management of risk are strongly placed to build robust and agile business models that provide a solid foundation for long-term success.
The storage and management of data play a fundamental role in the level of risk faced by businesses in the digital economy. For the majority, data has become the catalyst for innovation, competitive advantage, and growth – realizing its value can be truly transformative. However, ever-present ransomware attacks, new and increasingly strict laws and regulations, as well as exponentially growing ROT data, mean serious action must also be taken to protect against the huge levels of risk being continuously introduced.
This has historically been easier said than done, given the rate at which the sheer amount of unstructured data is increasing. However, the ramifications of not doing so can no longer be tolerated. Organizations must become more focused on utilizing the power of visualization to gain insights into their unstructured data environment, so they can take action to minimize, if not eliminate, risk and keep their business safe.
Taking control of orphaned data
Take the problems associated with orphaned data, for instance. Orphaned data is present on an organization’s servers but has no clear owner. This is typically brought about when employees leave the company but their data it not reassigned to a new owner or deleted. These datasets can amount to a significant part of a company’s total data estate. In particular, any enterprise with a large employee base, normal to high attrition rates, or undertaking merger and acquisition (M&A) activities are likely to have a large amount of orphaned data due to an ever-increasing number of inactive employees. Orphaned data introduces risk because the owner of the data is gone and the content is unknown.
Orphaned data can be extremely varied in nature. For example, in one situation Datadobi revealed to a customer that one of their employees—who left the company years before—had stored episodes of a famous TV show in their home directory. This irrelevant content sat on the company’s storage, taking up valuable space, and posing a potential legal risk to the company.
Whatever the nature of orphaned data, managing it consistently has become a growing problem for IT leaders. The risk associated with it is likely to grow the longer it is left on the company’s storage. In contrast, eliminating orphaned data enables IT leaders to lower risk while maximizing value from relevant unstructured data used by active users.
With the right unstructured data management solution, IT leaders can work to reduce the risk with orphaned data. When choosing a data management platform to address this issue, there are several key capabilities to look for in a solution.
The first is tracking and reporting. In order for an unstructured data management platform to deal with the difficulties of orphaned data, the solution must be able to locate it across all data centers and cloud storage services. The next priority is searching and tagging. A sophisticated search capability can retrieve all data that is owned by users who are no longer with the organization.
And crucially, IT teams must also have the ability to take action. Migrating the data, archiving it to a lower-tier platform, or deleting it completely should be among the options available. Which action to take depends on the requirements of each organization and may differ depending on each scenario. StorageMAP from Datadobi can do exactly this.
StorageMAP is the vendor and cloud-neutral data management platform that enables enterprises to get a grip on their unstructured data management challenges. StorageMAP helps companies achieve their highest priorities, such as reducing risk, and enables customers to use their data to its full extent. With StorageMAP, companies can assess, organize, and take action on their data from a single interface and across their entire unstructured data set on-premises or in the cloud.
Learn more about StorageMAP and how it not only reduces risk but also provides other business-critical capabilities such as reducing cost and helping to meet ESG requirements (i.e., environmental, social, and governance).