Scality’s 2023 predictions for the data storage industry
Scality has announced its data storage predictions for 2023, capping a year of unprecedented ransomware attacks and unstructured data growth that complicate the work of IT teams to run efficient enterprise computing resources.
In the present economic climate of higher costs and geopolitical uncertainty, Scality's forecast considers how big data storage solutions will evolve to meet these challenges, including how data security will remain a key storage industry driver, and how the Three I's – intelligent features, innovation, and integration – present new hope for data centre efficiency and effectiveness.
Paul Speciale, Chief Marketing Officer, Scality, summarised: "Data security considerations have always been [at the] top of [our] mind for our customers, but in 2023, IT leaders will evaluate every solution, including data storage, by its ability to protect data from the multiplicity of threat vectors. In 2022, the data storage industry evolved to embrace advances in AI/ML, hybrid clouds and edge computing that enabled greater data sovereignty and flexibility. In 2023, the pace will accelerate so IT teams will obtain long-promised features that deliver a significant uptick in efficiency."
- Security will dominate IT buying criteria, including for data storage. Supply chain issues and economic challenges will continue to impact storage projects in 2023 – the exception being those that can show tangible ROI on ransomware protection initiatives. This will present an opportunity for big data storage solutions with the intelligence to address current gaps in multi-level security, detection and data immutability for ransomware protection and fast business recoverability. Moreover, solutions that can provide AI-based anomaly-detection capabilities for detecting ransomware attacks will become more mainstream in the near future.
- Unstructured search gets smart with multi-cloud capabilities and rich feature sets. Customers need intelligent data search methods to optimise data analytics and mining of the trillions of unstructured data objects they have aggregated in object storage solutions. In 2022 cloud vendors such as Amazon and others made a step in the right direction by introducing a myriad of search tools and services. But there remains an unmet need for intelligence that allows the all-important "aha!" moment to arrive far faster.
We predict that in 2023 search and query capabilities for unstructured data storage solutions will mature, and vendors will integrate them with standard access methods, while still guaranteeing enterprise-class security and auditing. This will prove doubly advantageous in simplifying application development and allowing object storage resources to serve as the single solution for unstructured data storage and query.
- Malicious software supply chain attacks will slow open-source adoption. Malware and ransomware attacks have ballooned such that intrusions now occur every few minutes across the globe, costing businesses millions of dollars per incident and consuming untold IT cycles. We have already witnessed compromised security in commercial software solutions as seen in recent high profile attacks. Open-source software dependencies will become an increasing threat vector, causing enterprises to more carefully evaluate and vet these technologies before employing them at scale.
- As recession concerns loom, green storage innovation will rise in importance. We are experiencing a convergence of increased awareness on climate change and an extended economic downturn. These forces will cause enterprises to refocus their IT budgets on solutions that can deliver savings and ROI in operational costs through reduced power consumption.
The data storage industry has already focused attention in this area, as witnessed by the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) Green Storage Initiative that aims at standards for lower power consumption from large-scale data storage systems. Vendor offerings will emerge with innovations that reduce power consumption through smart resource utilisation and use of the latest low-power and high storage density platforms. This will provide measurable savings in power consumption and cooling to reduce environmental impact from storage.
- Tighter integration of managed cloud services and object storage will emerge. Application vendors will publish their own extended storage APIs for enhanced monitoring, reporting, performance acceleration and optimal data placement. This will be embraced by leading object storage solutions to deliver even more compelling solutions and ROI for enterprise and mid-market customers in data protection (backup and ransomware protection), big data analytics and AI/ML.
In addition, because customers value cloud-like storage services but show a preference for them from the comfort of their own data centre infrastructure, we will see increasing partnerships between object storage vendors and large OEMs or managed service providers (MSPs) to provide fully integrated, private-cloud S3 storage-as-a-service offerings.