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Why Add Cloud Backup — Now More Than Ever

Why Microsoft 365 Customers Need a Backup Solution

By now, the rapid and forced adoption of remote working scenarios has been well documented. Strict quarantines and work from home edicts across the world have mandated this transition, and the IT infrastructure has adjusted accordingly, with significant growth in online collaboration tools such as in Teams in Microsoft 365 (up to 75M daily active users, growing +70%  in six weeks) as an indicator of how cloud-based productivity service are taking off. Many business owners using Microsoft 365 believe that their data is totally secure. The reality, however, is a different story. Cautionary tales about lost data in the cloud are plentiful. Whether data loss is caused by vicious attacks or human error, these are the stories that keep IT staff up at night. Although Microsoft offers many benefits in productivity, efficiency, and collaboration with Microsoft 365, the company does not provide users with a comprehensive backup system for their underlying data.

Mechanical malfunctions and physical damage, hacking and theft, user error, and power outages all put user data at risk in the cloud. While companies do their best to prepare for these problems, no plan is foolproof, and stories of data loss are far from rare, with the average data breach costing small businesses $120,000. About 32% of companies get hit by data loss in the cloud, with the most common cause being deletion. Although nearly two-thirds of data loss is accidental, 20% is lost to malicious intent, including hackers.

Backup for Microsoft 365 Saves Data, Time, and Money

Cloud backup can be the difference between a slight blip and a disaster, and it can offer end-customers a way to mitigate these risks.  In one specific case, a customer that did not think it needed backup besides Microsoft 365 had an employee inadvertently delete 50,000 files in the accounting department’s SharePoint library.

The information was recoverable in the recycling bin, but this would have had to have been done file by file, which was going to take an estimated six days. Luckily, they had been backing up SharePoint files with cloud backup. So, the entire folder and all the files were restored within hours — a significant improvement in efficiency. After that, their customer expanded backup to its entire Microsoft 365 tenant as well.

Covid-19 pandemic-enforced remote work from home requirements provide new ballast for cyber-attacks. Hacking and phishing attempts are up 37% month-on-month since February 2020 and can cause severe damage. Ransomware is a very significant and specific threat. Osterman Research found that 22% of companies with fewer than 1,000 employees had to stop business operations immediately following a ransomware attack. Downtime costs small businesses more than $100,000 per ransomware incident, and one in six companies were down 25 hours or more.

Although it has become more sophisticated, many schemes are still simple and catch users off guard. For one customer hit with ransomware, the perpetrators wanted $6,000 for the key to unlock the data. Luckily, the customer had deployed cloud backup a few months before the attack.  So instead of paying the ransom or wasting hours recreating 44,000 encrypted files, they were able to restore all of user files, including every pre-attack version.

The fact is that having only one copy of important data is asking for trouble, whether it’s stored in the cloud or elsewhere. If your data isn’t backed up, you could be facing not only a loss of productivity as you scramble to rebuild, but also a loss in revenue and reputation.

Microsoft 365 is an excellent service that gives you access to your data from virtually any place at any time — and across many devices. As a software-as-a-service (SaaS) built on the industry-leading Azure public cloud, Microsoft 365 offers users high reliability, geographic redundancy, and secure connectivity.

This should not, however, be confused with a comprehensive data protection solution. Microsoft does not back up Microsoft 365 user data, so it recommends that customers use third-party solutions. Furthermore, Microsoft does not protect data from common issues like file corruption or everyday human error. Nor does it offer a way to easily revert to older versions if something goes wrong beyond their normal data retention policy.

Intermedia can help you evaluate your options in addressing these shortcomings and specifically discuss how implementing a backup solution can be cost-effective and seamless and offer peace of mind.

Intermedia Backup for Microsoft 365 Is Easy to Use, and Recovery Is Fast

Not all backups are created equal, however. When looking into a solution that can protect your data stored in the cloud, there are a few fundamental questions you should be asking your vendor:

  • What data is actually being backed up?
  • How is the backup data being stored and protected?
  • How often is data backed up, and how long is each backup version kept?
  • How easy is the data restoration process?

Intermedia Backup for Microsoft 365 is a flexible, agile, and reliable solution that offers comprehensive data protection across the full Microsoft 365 tenant, unlimited storage and retention of user data, and a hassle-free setup and run experience. And data recovery, when needed, happens fast, which gets your company up and running with minimum downtime. We encourage you to ask your Intermedia representative about Backup for Microsoft 365 to learn more.

About Craig Woods

Craig Woods is the Director of Product Marketing at Intermedia.