The Best Way to Use Data to Cut Costs? Delete It

The Best Way to Use Data to Cut Costs? Delete It

The Best Way to Use Data to Cut Costs? Delete ItThe Best Way to Use Data to Cut Costs? Delete It

While much is made of data analytics and the troves of data organizations retain, collecting and indiscriminately storing data can be detrimental to the business.

Total Cost of Data StorageTotal Cost of Data Storage

The total cost of ownership for storage is not declining. If a hypothetical company stores one petabyte of data now, it is likely to store 1.45 PB next year. If the storage cost drops 15% or 30% while volume grows 40%, storage cost cannot decline.

Storage Growth Is BurdensomeStorage Growth Is Burdensome

Growth in storage and managing it is an ever-increasing burden on all businesses, but you can do something about it; delete a significant percentage of expensive-to-store data.

Data HoardingData Hoarding

Not all data is useful. Businesses often don’t know what data they possess. Much of it may be junk that wastes data analysts’ time.

Big Data HypeBig Data Hype

One reason businesses collect and store more data than they can process is the vague belief that more is better. They hope to gain new insight from their data, but this is not a business strategy. It is a business wish.

Fear of Legal ConsequencesFear of Legal Consequences

Regulations, such as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, encourage data hoarding because companies believe it is safer to keep everything. There is no obvious incentive to delete, and under-preserving creates risks.

U.S. Courts Encourage Data StorageU.S. Courts Encourage Data Storage

In litigation, U.S. courts instruct juries to look askance at the absence of relevant data, such as emails, encouraging businesses to store everything.

European Union Deletion PoliciesEuropean Union Deletion Policies

The EU, recognizing “unreasonable persistence of data” in employee performance, for example, said data retention should be limited to 2 to 3 years after an evaluation.

Losing Junk Data Requires Information GovernanceLosing Junk Data Requires Information Governance

Junk data and its drain on a company’s resources are not an IT problem. They are a business problem.

Cooperation Is KeyCooperation Is Key

To attack junk data, businesses must take a holistic view of the challenge. The CIO and CFO and the company’s legal, compliance and security departments must collaborate to determine what data to store and what to delete.

Develop Statistical Sampling ProtocolsDevelop Statistical Sampling Protocols

Statistical sampling protocols can help reduce large amounts of storage media. Indexing and machine analysis can pinpoint what data to preserve or delete.

Automate Data DeletionAutomate Data Deletion

Manual deletion is difficult and expensive, so automate it. Establish machine rules that mandate the deletion of unnecessary and vulnerable duplicates.

Return on InvestmentReturn on Investment

Good information governance resulted in $8 million in savings for metals and mining company Rio Tinto, when it eliminated 35% of file shares in its network, for example.

Karen A. Frenkel
Karen A. Frenkel is a contributor to CIO Insight. She covers cybersecurity topics such as digital transformation, vulnerabilities, phishing, malware, and information governance.

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