Ransomware has topped the list of the most prominent cybersecurity threats organizations face today. The past year alone saw a notable jump (13%) in attacks that utilized data exfiltration. On top of this, Veeam’s 2022 ransomware trends report revealed that businesses are not only being increasingly targeted by ransomware but are also losing the battle to prevent and defend against it. According to the report, 72% of organizations had partial or complete attacks on their backup repositories in 2021, dramatically impacting the ability to recover data. Moreover, almost all attackers attempted to destroy backup repositories to disable the victim’s ability to recover without paying the ransom. 

Data is more critical than ever, so it’s no secret that it needs more protection as organizations’ data creation and consumption continue to grow in quantity and complexity. Data protection used to be a director or vice president-level decision, and with the exponential rise of ransomware, data protection has become a C-level or board-level discussion for every business. While the best-case scenario is stopping a ransomware attack before it hits production environments, that’s not always possible. Therefore, organizations must back up their data. 

This starts with ensuring the backups are safe by implementing ransomware resiliency throughout the process. It means having a hardened backup system so bad actors can’t get in. It means ensuring that your backup solution is performant enough to recover data when the production data is maliciously encrypted. Most importantly, it means keeping them on immutable storage to prevent any vector of digital tampering. To meet the security issues of today, organizations must now shift to object-based backup storage. 

Why current data storage methods fail 

Historically, shopping for backup storage was a balancing act. Customers had to consider whether ease of use and simplicity was more important than performance. They had to think about how to ransomware-proof their chosen solution while assessing the risk and overhead of managing the storage layer. And, of course, they had to worry about whether the solution would fit their budget envelope. The question was always, “What do I sacrifice, and how much of it?” 

But as ransomware attacks continue to rise — targeting primary data and, more often than ever, targeting backups —  having multiple co-located backup copies, detection and remediation are critical to ensure resilience, and sacrificing data protection is no longer an option. 

Because data is more critical than ever and needs to be protected and instantly recoverable, organizations cannot sacrifice performance. Because ransomware is so prevalent and detrimental to an organization, the security of a solution cannot be compromised. IT administrators are constantly overburdened, so they must prioritize ease of use and simplicity. Budgetary pressures are ever-present, and no organization has the luxury of sacrificing affordability with a looming recession. Today, the backup storage market is underserved, and businesses are left with no ideal solution checking off all the above-described boxes, often leaving them vulnerable to attacks. 

Object-based backup storage as the modern data storage hero 

Luckily, emerging technology can help address modern security concerns, specifically: object-based backup storage. While object storage itself has been around for 20+ years, only now are industries seeing the consideration and optimization of object storage for backup and recovery. Object storage delivers scale through its metadata-driven flat file system. Its ability to store large amounts of unstructured data has led to its adoption by large enterprises and become the de facto choice for cloud storage. 

On-premises object-based backup storage provides inherent advantages such as security and immutability, which can guarantee that data is unchangeable and safe against malicious attacks such as ransomware. The optimized performance enables the ability to run failed workloads directly from backup, ensuring companies are business as usual within minutes during any outages. 

File and block storage is far too ransomware prone to continue existing in the fashion they do. In contrast, object storage allows businesses to continue using storage as they always have, but now with ransomware resiliency.  

Navigating complications with object storage for backup 

Typical object storage implementations are feature-rich and designed for use with multiple applications that leverage erasure coding, multi-master replication, and various redundancy nodes. Current on-premises solutions focus on serving large enterprise markets and aren’t optimized for single applications like backup and restore.

But businesses — especially midsize enterprises — need a ransomware-proof solution with performance that can run production environments from backup storage for disaster recovery. When choosing on-premises object storage solutions, organizations should look towards solutions that move outside of specifically distributed, large-scale Kubernetes enterprise applications. Instead, look for an object storage solution designed specifically for the backup use case with hardened security and the right level of redundancy.

With an object storage backup solution tailored for midsize enterprises with constrained IT, organizations can ensure they are provided with defense against ransomware.