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How AI-powered data protection is evolving

by uma



By Preethi Srinivasan, Director of Innovation, Druva

Over the course of 2022, AI has continued to prove its value to businesses looking to cut costs, improve efficiency and reduce employee workloads. As we enter 2023, these benefits will become even more clear, as AI-powered tools that can both take over repetitive tasks and solve complex problems become essential for organizations looking to stay ahead of the competition.

AI/ML tools can take the load off employees, automating manual, non-value-add tasks and helping alleviate the pressures of day-to-day business processes. With high labor costs and a recession looming, AI/ML solutions will have a transformative impact in every corner of business.  

One area of business that can particularly benefit from AI-powered automation is data protection, where the quantity, quality and scale of data is making it virtually impossible for an IT team to have full manual oversight. In the new year, IT organizations will look to build or purchase autonomous data protection solutions that offer genuine savings, provide operational efficiency, and reduce or eliminate human intervention.

Using AI to automate data protection 

AI-powered data protection is the future for businesses wanting to successfully stay on top of their data, whilst freeing up IT teams to drive wider business growth. In fact, successful automation has the potential to bring backup failures to zero, which is increasingly important when IT teams across the board are experiencing a strain on resources.

The current status quo in data protection is unrealistic – expecting businesses to have dedicated teams to manage everything from backups, SLOs (Service Level Objective), RPOs (Recovery Point Objective), RTOs (Recovery Time Objective), and to diligently troubleshoot failures. In reality, workloads have grown more complex, data growth continues to soar, and there now are hundreds of enterprise applications used in most organizations. With such a wealth of tools and data, there is further increased demand on IT teams, especially backup admins to spend humongous time and effort on data protection tasks. 

By adopting AI-enabled tools, organizations can free these backup admins from under the data avalanche, so that they can focus on the wider IT and security strategy for the business. And it’s not just administrative problems that AI can solve going into 2023 – from spotting unusual user activity to tracking unusual activity within the data itself, AI and ML analytics in cybersecurity can proactively support the cybersecurity posture of the entire organization, delivering radical simplicity, security, and savings. 

Delivering these savings will be especially vital going forward, as reducing costs will be a top board-level priority in light of uncertain macroeconomic conditions. Effective use of AI is one way that modern solutions can help businesses navigate through a downturn, by leveraging automation technology to augment the IT staff, automate back-end processes and overcome costly administrative backlog. On top of this, with modern SaaS-based AI tools – companies only need to pay for what they actually use, cutting down on the overspend and removing overheads across the organization.

AI powered metadata

AI can bring many valuable benefits to businesses, especially in the data backup and recovery department. One benefit is cost savings, and another is the ability of AI/ML to help in the collection, processing, and analysis of metadata.

In the past, data protection meant simply bringing back customer data after a breach or data loss. Now, AI-powered, metadata driven autonomous data protection is the most effective approach. Autonomous protection driven by the metadata ecosystem of environmental parameters, resource utilization, and workload change patterns from billions of events on the Cloud not only derives insights but drives how data protection should be done. Autonomous data protection is the hyper automation which identifies bottlenecks, rectifies them, and proactively prevents them such that backups just work. 

“As a service” solutions such as security posture management, ransomware protection, governance, privacy, etc., can securely process these rich metadata ecosystems and leverage AI/ML to offer simplicity, security, and cost savings to organizations. These “as a service” solutions will be particularly important, especially as cyber security continues to be one of the top priorities in every business, and as ransomware becomes more complex and creative. As such into the next year security will be the dominant characteristic of data protection services.

Staying resilient in the new year

In 2023 and beyond, AI systems and tools will continue to be vital to businesses across all industries. As economic uncertainty is likely to continue into the new year, innovation in the AI space that can offer genuine savings to business and free up teams to provide value-add tasks will be essential.

By utilizing AI-empowered tools, businesses can reinvigorate data protection solutions and reduce backup failures to zero, allowing the business, and its data, to remain resilient against the challenges of the future.

Preethi Srinivasan, Director of Innovation, Druva

Preethi Srinivasan is the Director of Innovation at Druva, the organization that pioneered a SaaS-based approach to data protection, eliminating complex infrastructure and related management costs, and delivers data resiliency via a single platform spanning multiple geographies and clouds. She enjoys leading innovative product initiatives and exploring new technologies.

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