COVID-19 WFH: Latest Study Shows Rampant Rise of Ransomware Puts Organizations on High Alert

We recently released the results of our industry research on Ransomware and Disaster Recovery During COVID-19. With many companies issuing work-from-home (WFH) policies, we wanted to understand the impact of ransomware attacks on enterprise disaster recovery (DR) strategies during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Key Findings

Survey findings suggest that the COVID-19 WFH policy has had a significant impact on enterprise DR strategies.

  • 100% of respondents reported a rampant rise in ransomware, and all of their companies have experienced a ransomware attack in the last 12 months. 
  • Companies are prioritizing DR, and the cloud is playing a greater role as a DR site during this heightened threat.

100% Ransomware

Businesses on High Alert During COVID-19

Ransomware is a growing concern for organizations. As businesses pivot their strategies to survive an economic downturn, the cost of ransomware, which could be upwards of hundreds of thousands of dollars, can severely impact their bottom line.

  • Nearly 96% of respondents said their companies became increasingly concerned about being hit with a ransomware attack during the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s an increase from The State of Enterprise Data Resiliency and Disaster Recovery 2019 study by Datrium, which found nearly 90% of companies consider ransomware a critical threat to business.
  • The majority of respondents (68.5%) claimed that ransomware attacks have cost their companies between $100K-$500K, while 19.7% reported a loss of more than $500K. That includes ransomware payment, downtime, and lost business.

Tim Page, Datrium CEO said: At this challenging time, businesses are seeking ways to streamline operations and reduce costs. While ransomware comes with its own burden, the cost of a second data center for disaster recovery is not ideal. The pandemic is accelerating the move to cloud DR as companies find ways to adapt to a remote workforce.


What’s Causing the Increased Focus and Concern

Companies are rethinking their DR, security, and business continuity strategies because of the shift to a remote workforce and growing ransomware threat.

  • 92% reported that DR is more important at their company, given their distributed workforces.
  • 75% reported that their companies are concerned about ransomware during this time because:
    • A remote IT team makes recovery more difficult (73.7%)
    • A remote workforce makes it harder to enforce security protocols and increases the risk of an attack (73.4%) 
  • 48.1% said they are concerned about the growing cost of ransomware

92% Remote Work DR

Enterprise DR Strategies Focus on a Cloud-Centric Approach to DR 

The cloud offers a viable and accessible option for DR. Organizations can leverage on-demand cloud resources in a data disaster and still keep costs low. When asked what kind of DR approach businesses have in place, many responded that they currently or plan to leverage the cloud as part of their DR strategy.

  • 93.7% agreed they would be willing to adopt cloud DR if they could pay for it on demand, and it would protect all their data, including Edge environments. (63.9% of respondents currently use on-prem primary storage as a DR site.) 
  • 67.5% of respondents currently use the cloud as a DR site.
  • 21.2% have a DR plan that doesn’t protect against ransomware.

94% Cloud DR

Datrium’s Take on the Research Findings

We’ve built our DRaaS (DR as a Service) offering with the cloud-native and cost-effective approach at its core, enabling customers to recover quickly from ransomware attacks and other disasters without the complexity and high cost of traditional enterprise DR approaches. We also recently announced that we’re extending DRaaS with VMware Cloud on AWS to support Edge environments and ROBO deployments.

The research shows that on-demand and pay-as-you-go cloud DR is being increasingly recognized as a more efficient alternative to traditional DR approaches. This is no surprise as DR in the cloud offers flexibility with pay-as-you-go options that make DR painless and cost-efficient when responding to disasters,” added Page. “Ransomware and DR should continue to be top priorities for businesses planning for the ‘new normal’ as we come out of this pandemic. Those who are seeking the best approach for protecting against a ransomware attack should strongly consider a cloud DR technology that combines the functionality of primary storage, backup, and recovery into a single pane solution that enables speedy and easy recovery of data from the point of attack.


– Tim Page, CEO, Datrium


Learn More
  • Infographic – available for download now 
  • Webcastjoin us on May 28th at 10am PT | 1pm ET to learn about The Future is SaaS for Disaster Recovery & Business Continuity with VMware Cloud on AWS
  • Discuss your DR strategies – we’d love to talk so just get in touch
  • Survey respondents – findings from the research on Ransomware and Disaster Recovery During COVID-19 are based on a survey of 302 IT professionals from organizations with 500 employees or more that have experienced a ransomware attack in the last 12 months. Respondents included IT Ops, backup, DR, and storage admins plus application and workload owners in the U.S at organizations with more than 500 employees.