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E-mail archiving market poised to explode

New Radicati Group research points to the main drivers fueling the growth in the market for e-mail archiving and retrieval software.

Vendors of e-mail archiving and retrieval software will see revenue growth of more than $2.3 billion in their market over the next four years, a new study predicts.

The study, "E-Mail Archiving Market, 2004-2008," released by Palo Alto, Calif.-based analyst firm The Radicati Group Inc., finds that sale of e-mail archiving systems will skyrocket, mainly because of companies' ever-increasing storage needs and electronic document retention regulations such as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and HIPAA.

The Radicati Group further predicts that the e-mail archiving industry will experience a period of aggressive mergers and acquisitions, as major storage and security vendors seek to enhance their offerings by scooping up smaller players in the space.

People are afraid to delete anything.
Doug McCullar, director of LAN operations,

Masha Khmartseva, a senior analyst with The Radicati Group, said that many companies have also indicated that they would be interested in archiving software as a means to ensure "internal policy compliance." She said that organizations plan to use the software for things such as scanning e-mails for explicit content and to check for security breaches.

IT workers interviewed said they wouldn't be surprised by a significant increase in demand for e-mail archiving software.

Doug McCullar, director of LAN operations with the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, recently helped his department research the purchase of an e-mail archiving system. He said that they eventually went with Springfield, Mass.-based C2C Systems Inc.'s Archive One software for Microsoft Exchange.

The software hasn't been installed yet, but McCullar said that it will be used for compliance with open records laws. He also plans to use the software to move overflowing e-mail stores off the main server in an effort to speed up the nightly backup and disaster recovery times.

"People are afraid to delete anything," McCullar said, referring to tension over document retention regulations. "It's causing [e-mail stores] to grow faster than we can keep up with."

Vinu Jacob, senior messaging engineer for the New York-based law firm Willkie, Farr & Gallagher, said that his IT department uses an e-mail archiving system to manage the deletion of e-mails after a set period of time.

"We basically have a compliance issue where we are actually protecting the company against discovery orders," Jacob said. "We have a 30-day policy on e-mail retention."

Jacob said that his firm gets 50,000 e-mail messages a day. Before purchasing e-mail archiving software, e-mails were deleted manually using a native Microsoft Exchange utility. "This was a very difficult and onerous task," Jacob said.


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