Do I need to back up data that’s already in the Cloud?

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By Bob Milliken

Bob Milliken
Bob Milliken

The world of technology is in a constant state of transition and is forever changing. New ways of doing things demand new or revised thinking on how best to use new services. Over the last 15 years, SaaS (software as a service) providers have offered the convenience of data backup for your cloud applications such as CRM systems, SalesForce, Google Apps and Microsoft 365. The business question is, if I’m already working with a SaaS provider and my data is already “in” the cloud, do I really need to back up my data to another cloud? After all, isn’t the SaaS provider doing that for me?

Well yes, and no. Yes, your data (one of your company’s most valuable assets) is being backed up by the service provider. And yes, it’s in the cloud. And yes, these providers have backups to their backups…but are they backing up your business-critical information? Can you guarantee that? And do you have access to it in a timely manner? The answer to these questions may be no. As a rule, SaaS providers do not open backups to customers nor do they make restoring critical data easy or intuitive. For example, SalesForce, the first commercially available SaaS application, does nightly customer backups. But if you need to recover your data, you have to go directly to SalesForce and pay a minimum of $10,000 then wait a few weeks for your data to be restored.

While SaaS providers protect you against hardware failure on their end, it’s a redundant solution with very high availability that is not designed to protect against user error or internal attacks on your end. When you consider that 75% of data loss is due to user error, you begin to understand why it’s in your best interest to utilize a third-party cloud backup of your SaaS data.

Data loss happens, even in the cloud. Can your organization afford to lose emails and work documents? There’s no question that the results of data loss can be devastating to your company. It’s your company information and you need to take responsibility for safeguarding it. Your best strategy is to have a strategy in place.
1. Automate your backup process. Make sure you’re using something that lets you “set it and forget it,” to reduce the “oops factor” of missing a backup.
2. Don’t rely on SaaS providers. To really cut the risk from the “oops factor,” you’ll want more than one location for your backups. Backup up your SaaS cloud data in a secure cloud infrastructure that you control and manage.
3. Test your backup. Ensure that you can quickly and easily restore from your backup by doing a test restore of your backed up data on a regular basis.

Want to learn more about how to back up your cloud SAAS applications? Contact our office at 604.270.1730 or via e-mail at TheITguy@CascadiaSystemsGroup.com to schedule a time to discuss your particular situation and what solutions are available for you.

Bob Milliken is the president of Cascadia Systems Group. Connect with Bob at TheITguy@CascadiaSystemsGroup.com, or give us a call – 604.270.1730.
Your comments are appreciated – ComputerCents@CascadiaSystemsGroup.com