Storage managers are faced with crucial data storage tasks; protect access to the growing cache of information and do so economically. Ransomware is an impending threat to critical data and to the organization. In this BlogBytes article we will review key excerpts from a ransomware survey that examines these threats and data security practices that organizations face day to day including how a television producer has addressed these key issues. Read on.


A recent report by the Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG) provides cybersecurity details that were derived from a ransomware survey of over 600 IT and cybersecurity professionals. A whopping “79% of respondent organizations report having experienced a ransomware attack within the last year … nearly three quarters report that they have been financially or operationally impacted by these attacks.” Astoundingly, one third of the organizations were attacked more than once.  The report also notes that more than half of the organizations that were victims of a ransomware attack paid a ransom to regain access to their data and systems.

Cyber-criminals have become more sophisticated and target various areas of a firm’s infrastructure and as discussed in the ESG report, storage and cloud systems are the most likely targets. Shutting down operations and holding them hostage is the ultimate goal so attacking networks and IT infrastructures are also routine targets.  In 2021, a chemical distribution firm was attacked by ransomware. After the attacker stole 150GB worth of vital data the victim acquiesced and paid over $4M (USD) in a ransomware payment.  Protect your data! See how next.


Ransomware cyber-attacks are top of mind for IT execs and for good reason. The ESG paper explains that “ongoing ransomware attacks have resulted in tremendous costs for organizations, including downtime, productivity, device costs, network cost, lost opportunity, ransom paid, brand value, and so on. No technology can make organizations completely immune to cyber-threats, but air gap network technology and LTO-9 tape technology provide advanced ransomware protection.”  ESG explains that “an air gap is a means of taking a data copy—usually a [tape] backup copy—offline so that it is physically disconnected from any network and, therefore, inaccessible to cyber-attacks.”


Implementing LTO-9 air gap security is what a European TV production firm in the Baltic states has done to help protect sensitive media content and control costs.  A recent case study explains that “the TV production firm moved to new facilities and implemented an eight year data management strategy that included backing up their production data to disk. However, in just two years they reached capacity and realized the costs of the ‘all on spinning disk’ strategy became quite costly.” The firm decided that, “a change was needed to reduce backup costs and protect the valuable media content from online exposures; accidental deletions, virus infections, ransomware, and disk hardware failures.” 

The TV firm implemented an LTO-9 solution that is storing about two petabytes of critical data content. “There is no alternative to backing up our production content to tape. LTO tape gives us reduced costs along with energy and cooling savings versus spinning disk and it protects the data,” IT Director.


No firm is exempt from the on-going threat of cyber-attacks. It’s not if an attack will occur but when. Be prepared: store essential data long term on tape. When an LTO tape is removed from the drive an air gap is created between the tape data and the system preventing cyber access. The secure tape data can then be used to restore content. As ESG noted;   ”this provides advanced ransomware protection.” In addition, LTO tape technology has been shown to have proven reliability