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Survey: 60% of small biz in danger of losing critical e-mail

E-mail archiving is not being done in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), according to the results of a survey commissioned by GFI Software, an IT solutions provider for small and medium-sized enterprises. The study found that 62.4% of SMEs do not currently use a mail archiving solution, which puts them at risk of data loss, an inability to search for pertinent messages in the event of an audit or eDiscovery request; strain on Exchange servers; and storage problems.

The survey also revealed that greater than 38% of the 202 businesses polled do not have an archiving or backup solution of any kind in place, further exacerbating the chances that a network failure could result in a complete loss of critical data stored in email.

Additional results from the survey:

  • Two-thirds (66.8%) of respondents were unfamiliar with U.S. regulatory compliance standards regarding email archiving. This number ballooned to over 90% in businesses that rely on only one IT professional.
  • 37% said they are required to search for old or deleted e-mails on a monthly basis, if not more frequently, because of requests from end users, the need to meet compliance requirements, the need to provide copies of correspondence for a lawsuit or audit, or any other requirements.
  • 31% of respondents said they would consider a hosted approach to e-mail archiving.

Implementation of a mail archiving solution can enable several e-mail-related necessities, including maintaining an archive of all corporate e-mail correspondence, meeting the growing number of regulations for compliance, eDiscovery and other legislation, significantly reducing the demands on the Exchange server, and managing and reducing the company’s dependency on PST files.

“E-mail infrastructure is quickly becoming a complex beast, and IT administrators have more factors to consider than ever before — including an increasing level of compliance standards that many are apparently unaware of,” said Walter Scott, CEO, GFI Software. “As the survey clearly indicates, IT managers are routinely required to search for specific e-mails, and without the automated search capabilities that a mail archiving solution brings, they can take up valuable IT staff time to locate. Critical data stored in e-mail needs to be easily retrievable and accessible, for both day-to-day business concerns as well as for good compliance. Finally, taking the risk of not backing up or archiving key data stored in e-mail can be a very costly gamble depending on the type of data your business is dealing with.”

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