A majority of enterprise customers are failing to follow advice surrounding information management practice, with many improperly using backup and recovery software packages, according to new information from security specialist Symantec.
The vendor's 2010 Information Management Health Check Survey threw up a number of unsavoury findings, with too many organisations adopting a blanket policy of storing everything forever, resulting in rampant storage estate growth, unsustainable backup windows, increased litigation risk and inefficient discovery processes.
Although 87% enterprises believed a proper information management strategy should allow them to delete unneccessary data, just 46% actually had a formal policy in place.
The report found that the lines between backup and archiving storage was increasingly blurry; according to Symantec, respondents seemed clear that they were holding too much information in backup storage, with up to 25% of stored data not needed, but continued to use 75% of backup storage for either infinite retention or legal hold sets.
Of the data being stored for legal reasons - 45% of backup storage was used for this purpose, said Symantec - 40% of the information stored was irrelevant to compliance legislation.
"Infinite retention results in infinite waste. Enterprises see the value of a solid information management plan, but too many still follow the outdated practice of keeping everything forever," said Symantec Information Management Group vice president of product management, Brian Dye.
Symantec called for companies to refine their policies so that backup tools were used only for short-term and disaster recovery purposes instead of long-term archiving, as well as leaning on their IT partners to add-in automation and deduplication policies to save both time and money.