Less than two-thirds of Irish firms confident their data is safe – survey

18 Nov 2013

Following the revelations that tens of thousands of Irish consumers’ credit-card details have fallen into the hands of hackers after an attack on Loyaltybuild, a new survey reveals only 57pc of Irish firms are confident their data is safe.

New research on behalf of EMC found 57pc of businesses in Ireland are confident they could recover all their data should a system failure or downtime occur.

Interestingly, 77pc believe it will be a challenge to have skills keep pace with the rate of IT innovation over the next three years.

Business priorities driving IT transformation in Ireland are most commonly business process/operational efficiencies (47pc) and innovation in solution/product development (40pc).

Three-quarters of the firms surveyed see technology investment as a strategic way of achieving goals and 58pc believe the biggest barrier to coping with business priorities is cultural.

Can big data save the day?

According to the study, 41pc of businesses believe that big-data technology will prove vital in identifying and defending against cyberattacks.

Some 79pc of respondents in Ireland reported that decisions in their organisations could be improved with better use of data and 40pc agree that their senior teams trust big-data insights to make business decisions.

A quarter of the firms surveyed said they have already achieved a competitive advantage as a result of big data analytics technology, and 45pc believe that industries that succeed will be the ones using such tools.

However, 33pc of companies don’t have plans to implement big data.

Budget was cited by 67pc as the most important factor for business decision-making, but was also cited by 58pc as an inhibitor to big-data adoption as there was no clear business case or return on investment.

“Many businesses are aware of the huge competitive advantages the technology brings, particularly in protecting their key business assets against sophisticated cyberattacks,” said Jason Ward, director for EMC Ireland, Scotland and UK North.

“However, with only 57pc of Irish businesses saying they are confident that their business data is safe should they experience system downtime or system failure, the need to adopt new big-data technologies to protect their business is urgent. This is a core part of IT transformation, a process which Irish businesses are under way with.

“The majority of businesses in the region have already set out to virtualise and create cloud-enabled businesses and even more incredibly, some have created a fully software-defined infrastructure. This approach, combined with big data analytics, will see the agility and competitiveness of Irish businesses increase massively,” Ward said.

Data and analytics will be the subject of Silicon Republic’s Irish Data Forum on 22 November. For more information and speaker updates, visit the Irish Data Forum website

Binary sea image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years