There’s no denying that cloud services have made it possible for small business to be competitive. Software as a Service (SaaS) options like as Office 365 are popular cloud-based services that many small and midsize businesses use to meet their operational needs. SaaS allows your business to use current, robust versions of software without a significant investment in hardware and infrastructure. And because SaaS is scalable, your software expense can reflect fluctuations in your workforce.
However, there is one aspect of SaaS that merits further discussion: backup.
Data Security in SaaS Applications
What happens to your data when you use cloud applications? Most store data in the cloud, and often, this is better protection than an on-premise solution. Understand, however, that there are limits to this data protection.
Regardless of the SaaS solution your business uses, data generated using that solution is stored in the cloud. It’s relatively safe because cloud vendors take application security very seriously. And rightfully so – without application security, customers would be reluctant to trust the vendor with their business data.
Make no mistake, though – just because a cloud application stores your data, it doesn’t mean that your data is invulnerable. Far and away, the biggest threat to data of any kind is human error. Even data stored in the cloud can fall victim to mistaken deletion, malware and viruses triggered through a lapse of judgment, and even malicious intent from someone with access to a company’s information.
Additionally, data lost in the cloud can be irretrievable. This is why it is imperative for businesses to employ a backup solution separate from the data protection found in cloud-based applications.
Taking Control of Your Backup Environment
While there is a certain amount of data retention that occurs as part of SaaS offerings, a data disaster could still wipe out your business. Hardware or system malfunction, software corruption, and human error can quickly overload the basic retention offered by most cloud applications.
Without a backup solution employed in Office 365, you have a limited window of opportunity to recover lost data. End users can recover deleted data from the recycle folder, true, but recovery beyond the recycle folder requires admin intervention. Files removed from the recycle folder move to a recoverable folder for a limited number of days. Admins can recover files from this folder during the waiting period, but once they are permanently deleted there is no recovery.
Furthermore, data loss stemming from malware, ransomware, accidental data overwrites, canceled user licenses, or end-user deletion renders the data backup in the application ineffective. Your business may go hours, days, or even weeks trying to recover lost data, and may never recover it at all. For maximum protection of your business data in a SaaS environment, please consider using a cloud-to-cloud SaaS backup solution.
When used to protect an Office 365 environment, a SaaS backup solution runs automatically and captures point-in-time snapshots of each users’ Microsoft Exchange Online, OneDrive, SharePoint Online, Calendar, and Contacts. It detects new users and archives data from departing users, should that data need to be recovered. Backups happen quickly and do not require any on-premise infrastructure. Admins can access backups at any time from any location, an advantage should your facility become unusable.
Planning a Secure SaaS Environment
The migration of business applications to cloud-based solutions will continue for the foreseeable future. Choosing the right SaaS solutions for your business will require careful examination of your company’s needs, budget, and goals. Whatever SaaS solutions you choose, don’t overlook the necessity of an additional backup solution. Lieberman Technologies can help you to plan an effective and efficient SaaS environment, including backups. Contact us for more information.