Let’s hear it for system administrators!

Jul 30, 2021 | Retrospect, StorCentric

Today, just in case you hadn’t noticed, is System Administration Appreciation Day. Over the last year the work of sysadmins has been in the spotlight as businesses have struggled to ensure remote access.

A new report from Netwrix finds that 66 percent of system administrators have had to deal with an increased workload.

When asked about their top three challenges caused by the recent shift to remote work, 68 percent of sysadmins say that they are worried about the increasing number of cyberattacks and data breaches, and 66 percent say their workload increased as a result. More than a third (38 percent) picked lack of tools to support remote work as a top challenge.

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“System administrators play a vital role in protecting their organization’s data. Throughout the deep disruption of the past year, sysadmins were the ones battling to hold up the sky for businesses,” says Ilia Sotnikov, security strategist and VP of user experience at Netwrix. “IT teams truly need support in this battle, starting with basic privacy mindfulness from every employee and ending with investment in tools and other resources to help prioritize risks, spot threats to valuable data and simplify data security.”

Other industry figures have been weighing in on the important role sysadmins have to play too. Surya Varanasi, CTO at StorCentric says:

Over this past year, the criticality and immeasurable value of SysAdmins took center stage as the world was sent home to work, learn, shop, and do virtually everything else. And while many of us know it was far easier said than done, SysAdmins were tasked with ensuring secure and ongoing access to information, applications and communication. Successfully accomplishing this alone rightly earned SysAdmins star status in their organizations.

However, we know their responsibilities didn’t stop there. On their exponentially growing to-do list, was another key challenge — remaining vigilant and prepared to defend against the growing number of cybercriminals and attacks from ransomware and other malware. It was impressive to see the number of SysAdmins that elevated their backup strategy from basic to unbreakable. In other words, they knew that for today’s ransomware they needed to protect backed up data by making it immutable and by eliminating any way that data could be deleted or corrupted. Unbreakable Backup helped them to do just that by creating an immutable, secure format that also stores the admin keys in another location for added protection. With these capabilities in-hand, these savvy SysAdmins alleviated their worry about their ability to recover — and redirected their time and attention to activities that more directly impacted their organization’s bottom-line objectives. And that is indeed something to appreciate!

“We were reminded time and again over this past year just how much we should appreciate our SysAdmins,” says JG Heithcock, GM of Retrospect. “In addition to their virtually countless traditional responsibilities, we saw and continue to see so many that have risen to tirelessly fight the ever-increasing ransomware threat with smart strategies designed not only to avoid, but to recover — quickly, efficiently, affordably and completely from successful attacks. For this and countless other reasons, we are reminded today why SysAdmins have finally emerged from the shadows and taken their rightful place among the highly appreciated heroes of our IT departments.”

So, take the time today to let your system administrator know you appreciate their work. Use the tag #SysAdminDay if you’re appreciating on social media.