Technology

If you're using Office 365 or G Suite, you need a third-party backup system

June 30, 2018
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Imagine walking into work tomorrow, logging onto your computer and realizing that all of your emails are now encrypted and unable to be recovered.

Now, imagine if this happened to every single person within your organization. What would your team do? Would your company be able to handle an IT disaster like this?

For those who have the proper back-up protection in place, a problem like this would only be a minor hiccup and something that can be resolved fairly quickly. But those who are not prepared are looking at a massive, uncertain and time-consuming undertaking in order to potentially recover lost data.

One of the biggest trends in the IT industry in the last few years is the major switch from on-site servers to cloud-based servers. While there is value in doing this, including better employee flexibility, increased collaboration and efficiency, a lot of companies are not prepared for disaster situations like the one described above.

A large majority of companies are using Microsoft’s Office 365 or Google’s G Suite for their email and data-sharing needs. Office 365 and G Suite are both SaaS (Software as a Service) platforms that use a licensing model based on a subscription. While these are very trustworthy companies, if you read the fine print, they state that you should have a third-party backup system in place when using their services, as they do not provide robust backup in the event that a huge amount of data is lost.

Data can be lost in several different ways, but the most common reasons are human error (someone accidentally deleting important files), malicious intent (a disgruntled employee scrubbing data clean) or the introduction of a virus or ransomware.

Ransomware, a specific type of malicious software that locks users out of their files until they pay a ransom, has become prevalent in the past few years and is now the biggest global threat to security today. Phishing scams, or those emails you get with a strange “from” address that are usually asking you to verify account information or provide banking numbers, are a huge threat to businesses, given the fact that one employee can compromise an entire system if they open the wrong email.

G Suite and Microsoft Office both have a 30-day backup window, where deleted files can be recovered; however, many people don’t realize that it is 30 days or 10,000 Office 365 SharePoint files, whichever comes first. Companies that have massive amounts of data need to realize this form of backup is not sufficient and could result in the loss of extremely important files that will never be able to be recovered. This is why a third-party SaaS backup system is crucial.

While losing important emails and data already sounds like a nightmare, there are certain industries, like law or health care, where it is legally required for practices to keep emails and certain data for a specific amount of time. Those that are not in compliance, even if it is by no fault of their own, are subject to legal punishment.

Third party SaaS backup systems can recover an unlimited amount of data or lost emails, even if the document is 15 years old and was sent that long ago. Backup scans should be done daily, if not several times each day, to ensure the best protection. Having this type of system in place, whether you have five employees or 5,000, is something that will save you both time and money if an IT disaster should strike. Third party SaaS backup systems are only a couple dollars per person each month, and given the fact that companies are already paying a monthly fee per employee for the SaaS platforms, it is a wise investment.

Between new ransomware scams, cloud service issues or human errors, there are many ways that your company could find itself in the midst of a data crisis. In this age of technology, years and years of hard work and important files can be gone in an instant, and unless you are properly protected, that could potentially be the final nail in the coffin for some businesses.

Don’t wait until there is a four-alarm IT disaster — be smart, be proactive and invest in a third-party backup service.

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