New Survey by Retrospect, Inc. Reveals 52% of Small Businesses Have Suffered Data Loss

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Small business survey examines data protection, data loss, and downtime for 1,000 small businesses

Data loss infographic

Data Loss at Small Businesses

Data loss can happen at any time, through accidental file deletion, misplaced laptops, stolen hard drive, or flood, and the accompanying employee downtime can be extremely costly

A new survey sponsored by Retrospect, Inc., makers of award-winning Retrospect Backup & Recovery software, finds that more than half of small businesses have suffered data loss, through accident, loss, failure, theft, or disaster. The survey, conducted with Google Consumer Surveys across a sample of 1,000 small businesses, highlights the importance of data protection for small businesses.

The survey respondents reported accidents to be the most common form of data loss at 36%. Behind that, they reported loss at 21%, theft at 15%, disaster at 7%, and other at 6%. Under "Other", respondents included "drive failure", "manufacturer erasing the hard drive during a warranty repair", and "employees doing things they shouldn't". And with the ability to select more than one form of data loss, 2% reported that they were unlucky enough to suffer from all four types.

According to a Gartner study [1] of companies experiencing a "major loss" of computer records, 43% of companies were immediately put out of business, and another 51% permanently closed their doors within two years. Only 6% lasted longer than two years.

Even without a major loss of data, employee downtime is a costly result of any data loss situation. The survey revealed that, for the last data loss event, 29% of respondents had employee downtime of 1 to 8 hours; 21% had employee downtime of 8 to 40 hours; and, an astonishing 7% had employee downtime of over 40 hours. Just among the 1,000 small businesses surveyed, they lost two and a half years of employee productivity.

Mitigating this, 54% of small businesses back up every day. According to the survey, 28% of respondents back up continuously; 26% back up daily; 17% back up weekly; and, 11% back up monthly. Only 17% of small businesses do not utilize any data protection.

"Data loss can happen at any time, through accidental file deletion, misplaced laptops, stolen hard drive, or flood, and the accompanying employee downtime can be extremely costly," says Jean-Christian Dumas, Vice President of Worldwide Sales. "Small businesses need business continuity as much as larger corporations. We're happy to see the majority of small businesses take data protection seriously and hope the rest will find a backup product that fits their business and their budget."

See a full infographic for more information.

[1] Gartner, "Recovery will move to disk-based managers of managers approach by 2011",

About Retrospect

Retrospect backup and recovery software provides small and midsize businesses with the reliability, ease of use, power, and flexibility needed to protect critical data on mixed-platform networks. Retrospect offers local and offsite backups, precise point-in-time restores, file-level deduplication, iOS remote management of multiple backup servers, end-user-initiated restores, and industry-leading customer support. With more than two decades of field-tested expertise and millions of users worldwide, Retrospect meets the needs of organizations that require the highest level of recoverability.

About Retrospect, Inc.

Retrospect, Inc. is dedicated to providing reliable backup and recovery tools for professionals and small-to-midsize businesses. For additional information, please visit

Retrospect is a registered trademark of Retrospect, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their registered holders.

Company Contact

Kristin Goedert
Director, Worldwide Marketing

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