Data Protection Trends in Public Sector

Veeam recently published the latest and largest research report on data protection, as surveyed by an independent research firm with nearly 3,400 responses from 28 countries. Among these responses were over 350 IT leaders from federal agencies, state and local governments, and educational institutions.

Veeam sponsors this research to fully understand how customer goals and challenges may differ across areas, organization sizes, and industries. It’s particularly important to explore the practices and challenges of public sector organizations, because their priorities often differ sharply from those of commercial organizations:

  • Military branches: for warfighters, the consequences of mission downtime or data loss can literally be life and death, and data protection requirements often reflect that
  • Civilian agencies and local government:
  • Educators at all levels have made the transition to hybrid teaching and must maintain uptime while remaining compliant and safeguarding student data

For each of these types of organizations, we asked about the relative criticality and business continuity requirements of their applications. We also explored their current and planned future infrastructure choices, both for production workloads and for data protection. We asked about the causes and impacts of downtime, and we learned in detail how well the current data protection strategies of surveyed agencies and schools were performing.

To see a brief introduction to the survey’s public sector findings, check out this 4-minute video: 

In part, we learned that as government bodies and schools at all levels have evolved into data-centric organizations, that evolution has been accompanied by an explosion of mission-critical data. Because many government organizations, particularly defense forces, are leading technological innovators — the challenges of protecting that data have only grown.

Public sector customers must meet unique requirements around:

  • Mission uptime – given the ongoing transition to digital government and digital services, it’s critical to protect citizen and student data while managing costs. As mentioned above, this is job #1 for defense forces or civilian public safety bodies. And it’s especially true as these organizations move critical workloads to infrastructure and Software –as –a Service offerings in the public cloud.
  • Cybersecurity and risk management – schools, universities, and local governments are in the crosshairs of ransomware adversaries worldwide. These organizations require simple, cost-effective, and proven strategies to improve their security posture, safeguard data, and mitigate cyberthreats.
  • Increasing compliance and records mandates – government organizations at all levels face an ever-increasing compliance and records retention burden, and this requirement now extends to data in hybrid and multi-cloud application environments.
  • Citizen confidence and staff retention – while there is a worldwide shortage of skilled IT and cybersecurity talent, this gap can feel especially acute for public sector organizations who may have difficulty being wage-competitive with private sector firms. It’s key for these organizations, and for their elected leaders, to ensure they’re in the headlines for only the right reasons. Especially during the last two years, technology choices and management have moved from cost centers to critical-mission enablers.

With all of that said, it’s worth noting that the Veeam platform has data protection solutions that span on-premises physical servers, virtualized environments, and the public cloud, including popular SaaS offerings like Microsoft 365.

We hope that this brief look at public sector data protection has been helpful. This post is part of a multi-part series, so please check the Veeam blog for earlier and upcoming posts:

Please reach out to Jason (@JBuff) or me (@JeffReichard) to tell us how this research aligns with your organization’s data protection goals for 2022 — and don’t forget to download the full report.

CLICK HERE to download the full Data Protection Trends 2022 report.

And for a much more comprehensive dive into the public sector findings from the Data Protection Trends 2022 report, please join Jason and me for a live webinar tomorrow – Wednesday, March 9 at 3:00 PM ET, when we’ll unpack all of this data in much more detail. You can register here.

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