Tape storage is far from obsolete, as a new report from the LTO program reveals that a record 148 exabytes of tape shipped last year.
LTO program technology provider companies HPE and IBM released their annual tape media shipments report showing that LTO tapes witnessed an impressive 40 percent growth rate in 2021.
Although only 105 EB of total tape capacity shipped during the pandemic in 2020 and 114 EB (the previous record) in 2019, last year’s tape shipments broke a new record as organizations sought to leverage cloud storage costs when archiving their unstructured to lower data.
GM and VP of HPE Storage Patrick Osborne provided further insight into the report’s findings in a press releaseSaying:
“Despite significant business disruption and uncertainty in 2021, LTO tape capacity shipments achieved the largest increase since 2006 and surpassed the previous record set in 2019. We continue to see companies returning to tape technology, seeking storage solutions with high capacity, reliability, long-term data archiving and… stricter data protection measures, especially in the face of rising cybersecurity threats.”
Cyber threats continue to drive tape adoption
If a company has its systems infected with malware or its files locked after a ransomware attack, it can cause irreparable damage to its business. While there are proactive steps a business can take to defend against the latest cyber threats, tape storage keeps sensitive files and documents from even being online.
According to the LTO program, organizations are increasingly turning to LTO tape technology to improve data protection at a time when ransomware attacks are on the rise. This is because tape storage offers an inherent air gap that denies cybercriminals the physical connectivity needed to access, encrypt, or erase data.
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At the same time, ransomware trends are increasing the need for organizations to adopt the 3-2-1-1 backup rule, which involves storing at least three copies of data on two different storage media, one off-site and one offline.
LTO-9 technology also makes it easier for organizations to store more data on a single tape by offering increased storage capacity of up to 45 TB on a compressed tape cartridge. LTO-9 drives are even fully backwards compatible with LTO-8 cartridges, allowing organizations to continue using their existing tape storage.
The question now is whether the increased adoption of tape storage will continue this year and whether the amount of total tape capacity shipped in 2022 will exceed last year’s shipments.
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