Online backup service Mozy recently launched itself in the UK and Eire and to highlight the fact challenged people to smash up their laptops there and then in exchange for a new one.

Good deal maybe, but understandably there was some reluctance as the get out clause for Mozy was that they had to do it without backing up any data on their computer. Okay a good PR stunt and there’s a video of the reactions which can be seen at the bottom of this story and inevitably there was one woman who had backed up her data and was happy to take a large hammer to her laptop and walked away with a brand new Macbook Pro.

But there was a serious side to this stunt and this was that 40% of people in the UK do not back up their data. The flip side is that 60% do carry out a backup which I think is on the high side, but it’s good to see the balance in favour of the switched on people who protect their data. The bad news is that few backup online and keep their data on CDs and memory sticks in the same place as their home computers; crap waiting to happen!

Mozy also carried out some research among almost 2000 UK residents and the executive summary revealed:

  • The home computer has become a central part of everyday life and is now something few people can function without
  • More and more people are using computers not only for personal purposes such as surfing the web, writing emails, and storing digital files, but also for work projects. This makes effective backup a necessity rather than a luxury
  • The data stored on home computers and laptops has a high value to individual consumers. On average, the perceived value of this data is 2,500 times more than the cost of an unlimited online backup service
  • Few UK consumers choose online backup, instead opting to use only CDs, USB keys or external hard drives. These are typically kept in the same place as home computers, putting backed up data at the same level of threat as the PC on which the data originated
  • With technological advances and an increasing number of digital files now being stored on computers and laptops, using online backup in combination with local backup is the most efficient way of ensuring that data is safe and secure
  • All across the UK, people risk losing precious information and records of memories and need to realise the importance of data.

The full report makes interesting reading and can be viewed here. Check out Mozy here.