Year in Review: How data security dominated the data recovery conversation in 2014


Kroll Ontrack reveals latest trends in data recovery  


MINNEAPOLIS, Dec. 9, 2014 – Data security, business continuity and mobile devices were among the biggest trends impacting the data recovery industry in 2014, according to year-end information from leading provider Kroll Ontrack. The most talked about trend however was how data recovery companies could help corporations protect their data from theft. 


Cybersecurity Breaches: A driver of data loss and subsequently a refined approach to data recovery

As cyber data breaches made headlines throughout the year, Kroll Ontrack performed several large data recovery projects that were the result of hackers. With a heightened focus on data security practices, the number of corporations requiring on-premise support to ensure data didn’t leave their organization’s doubled from 2013 to 2014. Conversely, 2014 also saw hundreds of highly regulated healthcare, government and educational institutions needing Ontrack® Remote Data Recovery™ (RDR®) software, a proprietary service that maximizes data security because the data recovery can also be performed without a hard disk or other storage device leaving an enterprise’s data center for high-end server or cloud recoveries.


“From viruses such as CryptoLocker to mass cybersecurity attacks, security protocols were a high-profile concern for corporations in 2014,” said Jeff Pederson, senior manager of data recovery operations, Kroll Ontrack. “When malicious intent ensues, it is critical to get an expert involved that understands the complexity and urgency of rapidly responding to the incident, while giving you a deep understanding of where your data is and where it’s going.


Encryption and Erasure: Validating the effectiveness of corporate practices
Because security was such a hot topic in 2014, storage and software companies as well as VARs and OEMs
turned to Kroll Ontrack for its expertise in recovering data to ensure no one can get unauthorized access to data on their storage media. Specifically, organizations took the initiative to affirm their encryption and/or data erasure protocols to meet stringent regulations and provide peace of mind to their customers. For both encryption and end-of-life drives, this process entailed analyzing the media and performing a series of tests to certify that data cannot be recovered if a storage device were to be retired, repurposed or if it fell into an adversary’s hand.


“In today’s security conscious and highly regulated world, it is more important than ever for entities to ensure data security methods and protocols put in place are functioning as designed and are verified that they work properly to protect information,” said Troy Hegr, data recovery technology manager, Kroll Ontrack.


OEM Partnerships: Collaboration with data recovery providers for business continuity

Data storage device manufacturers made business continuity a high priority in 2014. Kroll Ontrack joined forces with several major hardware and software OEMs to collaborate to better ensure faster recovery times and greater recovery rates from drives if and when they become corrupt or fail. For example, Kroll Ontrack teamed up with an SSD market leader SanDisk to create a 75 percent reduction in the amount of time needed to pinpoint the most common drive failures, speeding data recovery.


“New drives and innovative data storage technologies are being developed all the time,” added Pederson. “These new technologies mean new proprietary data recovery tools and processes need to be developed to address the latest drive architectures. By collaborating with OEMs, we can more easily determine how to perform successful data recoveries, which improves results when the customer is in need of immediate assistance.”


Software Defined Storage: Discovering data recovery is possible

Kroll Ontrack saw an increase in software defined storage failures in 2014. Implemented for their “fail-proof” qualities, Kroll Ontrack was often contacted after the storage manufacturers told the corporations in trouble that recovery wasn’t possible if a current backup did not exist. To the contrary, Kroll Ontrack addressed these recovery scenarios by researching and re-building the software defined storage maps and therefore restoring data to the point in time when the failure occurred.   


“The takeaway here is to always maintain current backups and/or snapshots and test them,” said Pederson. “Further, corporations should consider partnering with a reputable data recovery company before a critical data loss event occurs. Doing so will dramatically speed ramp-up time and thus recovery turnaround.”


Phone, Tablet, Flash and SSD: Recovery requests dramatically increasing

From 2013 to 2014, Kroll Ontrack saw marked increases in recovery requests for mobile phones, tablets, flash and SSD devices. Specifically, recovery requests rose by 42 percent for phones, 69 percent for tablets, 13 percent for flash and 48 percent for SSDs.


“While small, newer mobile storage devices are more powerful and contain data of great importance to both consumers and corporations,” added Hegr. “It is therefore incredibly important that data recovery companies like Kroll Ontrack invest in research and development to keep up with the latest technology to be able to address recoveries from these devices. In 2014, Ontrack Data Recovery engineers developed the unique ability to repair the operating system and then access the data for all Apple mobile devices, including the iPhone 5S and iPad Air, which are hardware encrypted. This newly developed method changed the mobile recovery game, making recovery far more successful for Apple customers.


About Kroll Ontrack Inc.

Kroll Ontrack provides technology-driven services and software to help legal, corporate and government entities as well as consumers manage, recover, search, analyze and produce data efficiently and cost-effectively. In addition to its award-winning suite of software, Kroll Ontrack provides data recovery, data destruction, electronic discovery and document review. For more information about Kroll Ontrack and its offerings please visit: or follow @KrollOntrack on Twitter.




Media Contact: Kaitlin Shinkle, 952-516-3581,