Far more U.S. companies have plans to avert sprained ankles than policies to protect themselves from massive data loss, a recent survey disclosed. Indeed, with disks now capable of storing huge amounts of data, PCs often are entrusted with material that small businesses can't exist without, yet only 18% of small businesses have backup policies. (See "Stop, Back Up!, February 1993, [Article link].) Of the individual computer operators found to back files up religiously, this chart shows what inspired them to do so.

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Importance of data 48%

Previous experience of data loss 28

Company policy or legal obligation 15

Did not trust computers 5

Automatic backup system available 3

Other 1

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Source: Survey conducted by Intelliquest Research, Austin, commissioned by 3M, St. Paul, Minn., June 1992.