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How should the virtualized backup market evolve?

GDPR looms large over many data protection processes, and virtual backup is no different. Overall management is important as well, as data volume continues to grow.

Although the world of virtualized backup was itself initially a disruptive technology, it is now subject to exactly the same lifecycle as any other product. That process entails reducing the cost and complexity involved, while providing more features and functionality.

The virtualized backup market is still in its relative infancy because the sheer volume of data being backed up is only going to continue to explode. Vendors are going to have to develop ways to ingest and manage backup data on a massive scale, while also reducing the complexity involved. The ability to manage a lot of disparate data needs to be simplified.

All those items mentioned already may well become of secondary importance, at least for companies based in the European Union or that have customers based in the EU. The EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) goes into effect May 25, and EU-based companies have a legal requirement to not only find the data that relates to a customer and be able to report it, but also to delete it.

That may sound trivial until you realize that searching and deleting on such a granular level will become a necessity. A lot of companies at present are having a lot of trouble trying to work out how to manage huge tape archives of data that have not been actively managed in years. Those historical tapes have to be managed. A niche but lucrative market brings those old tapes into a virtualized backup environment where they can be ingested by a platform that allows indexing and searching of the data.

In short, the virtualized backup product of choice needs to be scalable and searchable and incorporate new technology to meet GDPR-related rules. It also needs to become intelligent enough to detect security breaches and potentially take remedial action. After all, virtual machines house huge amounts of data that need to be searchable and restorable and fit within compliance and security regulations.

There are going to be a lot of changes as the volume of data increases over the next few years, so managing that data will be key.

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