Office gossip drives storage spending

E-mails filled with office gossip or forwarded jokes may be costing firms more than just minutes of employees' time, according to research.

LONDON--E-mails filled with office gossip or forwarded jokes may be costing UK firms more than just minutes of employees' time--storing the electronic missives is draining companies' cash too, according to research.

With analyst house IDC predicting that e-mail traffic will reach 35 million messages a day by 2005, and data retention legislation such as the United States' Sarbanes Oxley Act making storage a business priority, the costs of keeping e-mails is set keep rising.

A survey of IT directors has found that e-mail storage now makes up around 40 per cent of data retention costs in businesses in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, with IT heads reckoning that 20 per cent of all the e-mails they have to keep are personal or non-work-related messages.

Out of the 630 IT directors questioned by Hitachi Data Systems, ten per cent thought that e-mails were making up 40 per cent of their total storage capacity, with another quarter believing that e-mails are adding up to 20 per cent of their entire storage.