Why is surge protection important?
Sudden unwanted increases in voltage, called power surges, can damage or destroy electronic equipment. Huge voltage spikes caused by lightning or failed power lines can wipe out or fry your electronic equipment. Although these are the most dramatic instances, they occur in less than 30% of cases. The constant switching of lights, heating and air-conditioning systems, refrigerators, pumps and other electrical equipment cause frequent small disturbances. A 17-month study done by IBM in 49 cities across the country found that an average of 128.3 disturbances happened in each monitored facility, every month. Most were surges that did not cause immediate damage, but could wear down equipment over time, corrupt data and shorten the lifespan of equipment. While it is impossible to prevent voltage surges from either entering a building or from occurring inside a building, surge protective devices reduce and divert transient voltage levels. Surge protection is a cost-effective solution to maintain business continuity and prevent equipment damage.
What is the risk?
Although statistics vary, as much as 40% of data loss incidents occur because of power surges., ,  Recent statistics have shown that 59% of all electronics casualties are due to power problems, and most computers are subject to two or more power anomalies a day. Data loss from hard drive failure and power surges accounts for the largest chunk of data loss incidents. Additionally, businesses typically misplace their worries and spend more money on theft and virus protection when it only accounts for less than 15% of data loss occurrences. Since power surges or blackouts can occur anywhere and at any time, it only makes sense to protect your computer by investing in some sort of surge protection device.
What are the costs of data loss?
The costs incurred from lost data loss and equipment failure can be catastrophic. A 2008 Price Waterhouse Coopers Survey found that a single incident of data loss costs business an average of $10,000. A 2010 study at Pepperdine University estimated annual data losses to PCs cost US businesses of at least $18.2 billion. The average business has $60,000 worth of computer data and many of them have little or no protection at all. The average PC data loss can cost more than $2,000 when you consider technical support for recovery, lost productivity, and lost data. There are several reasons to believe this is a conservative estimate. In addition to replacing equipment and lost work, man hours, recovery periods and lost sales can add to the costs. Additionally, legal costs and damage to a businesses reputation during an extended period of computer downtime are hard to quantify and could be the crucial difference between staying in business or having to close up shop. Extra costs would be incurred if a data loss incident occurs to two or more PCs on a network.
What about lightning strikes or downed power lines?
The Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) found there were 185,789 lightning claims from homeowners in 2009 costing $798 million, with an average claim totaling $4,296. These losses ranged from damage to expensive electronic equipment to structural fires that destroyed entire homes. Regular surge protectors and built-in computer surge protectors aren't enough to combat the massive voltage in these situations. Without proper surge protection these incidents can wreck a busness.
It's only a matter of time
Data loss concerns for businesses are only going to get worse. As we rely more on informations and data to drive our business, data loss from power surges will result in an even greater financial burden. A company that experiences a computer outage lasting for more than 10 days may never fully recover financially and 50% of these companies suffering will be out of business within 5 years. Another survey claimed 93% of companies that lost their data center for 10 days file bankruptcy in a year.
As our technology grows so do our risks. Increasing storage capabilities make it more convenient to store all data in one place, but also make a hardrive failure more dangerous. Networked computers that fail can create a virtual information chain disruption, causing workflow stoppages. Without proper surge protection businesses are running the risk that one bad day can make for a very bad year.
Learn about ioSafe hard drives and protecting from data loss