South Africans 'digital scatterbrains' when it comes to data storage


SA is in digital chaos, with users storing data on no fewer than 14 electronic devices and 60% of us never backing it up.

South Africans claim they are organised in their daily lives, the complete opposite could be said for their digital footprint. (AFP)

South Africa is a nation in "digital chaos" with only sheer luck preventing us from losing precious personal photos, videos and files. That's the verdict of leading digital storage company WD, which recently released results of a study that found that we store personal files on no fewer than 14 electronic or storage devices with 60% of us never backing up a single item of data.

The study, carried out among 1 000 South African adult respondents, was conducted to celebrate the launch of WD's new family of personal cloud storage solutions, My Cloud. It found that although 89% of South Africans claim they are organised in their daily lives, the complete opposite could be said for their digital footprint.

The research found that South Africans keep files on a plethora of devices, including mobile phones, tablets, laptops, personal computers and USB sticks. Of those that do not back up, 40% blamed their busy schedule and 15% said they could not be bothered.

Many expressed a personal reluctance to be digitally organised and 50% of parents have admitted they'd rather pay their children to back up their files for them than go through the hassle of doing it themselves. Organising parents' digital content is the new household chore, replacing the traditional pocket money earners of gardening and washing the car, which ranked in third and second place respectively.

Digital scatterbrains
Although South Africans are digital scatterbrains, it appears we fare slightly more favourably than our European counterparts. Of the five European countries involved in the study, Spain was cited as the most digitally disorganised, using 16 devices. The Germans and Italians were not far behind with 15 each.

Anamika Budree, sales manager for WD branded products in South Africa, said, "Years ago people would get their photos developed and organise them in family photo albums, but now we are a nation in digital chaos with only good fortune preventing us from losing files and photos forever.

"With almost one in five South Africans admitting they don’t know how to back up their all-important data, the new My Cloud personal cloud device not only enables people to organise their data in one place and on one device, but also means that it can be accessed anywhere in an instant, making sharing with friends and family easier than ever before."

WD says its My Cloud family of personal cloud solutions is the easiest, most secure and most affordable way for families to control their digital chaos, with access to all of their files anywhere, anytime with mobile and desktop apps.

Price and availability
The 2 TB and 3 TB My Cloud is available at select retailers and online at the The 2 TB My Cloud is expected to be available for R1 799, R2 199 for 3 TB and R2 699 for 4 TB.

The My Cloud mobile app is available for download from the App StoreSM and Google PlayTM. A two-drive and four-drive My Cloud configuration will be available in the future. –

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