Where should data go to ensure it is safe? This is a pressing question facing every IT department in the world, whether they know it or not. Offsite backup is based on the premise that this content will be at its most secure when it is out of the building, beyond the reach of any natural catastrophes that harm offices and data centers. Until recently, this meant a complex operation, with tapes and hard drives being carted to secure locations. However, the emergence of cloud solutions has changed the complexion of data recovery entirely.
With cloud backup, data speed and distance are no longer mutually exclusive. The cloud can help organizations protect their content in a variety of specialized situations and common sets of circumstances.
Clouds protect remote sites
TechTarget Senior Site Editor Andrew Burton recently recounted the trends he and his publication have seen in data backup at remote or satellite sites over the past few months. This is a specific kind of challenge, with Burton noting that branch offices can lack IT personnel but they still need to be defended from data disasters. Cloud was one of the spotlighted areas, and Burton explained that its popularity has risen in recent years. Cloud computing is a technology on the rise, with breakthroughs in capabilities and competing offerings from a plethora of providers enabling users to accomplish ever more impressive feats with the solutions.
Burton reported that one of the major advantages of the cloud for backing up remote offices is the fact that there is little IT expertise needed on-site to execute a successful cloud backup operation. This means the main IT department at corporate headquarters can be individuals responsible for working with the backup solutions, instead of putting this in the hands of someone at the branch site who may not have the same training. A consistent approach can be instituted across a whole sprawling company, inspiring peace of mind.
The benefits of backing up remote locations’ data centers to the cloud and the realization of those positive effects have had a measurable impact on usage. Burton noted that 11 percent of respondents to his publication’s latest user survey now back up their satellite offices’ IT to the cloud. The previous year’s study found only 5 percent stated they were doing so. Burton reported that cloud providers can employ technologies that enable quick and efficient backups, without the intense bandwidth demands that would come from duplicating entire contents of data centers multiple times a day.
MSPs need reliable systems
Another unique cloud use case concerns managed service providers that want to ensure their own systems and the ones they provide to clients are protected. This may mean cloud backup, according to Talkin’ Cloud blog contributor Art Ledbetter – these solutions can encompass protection for a wide range of technology types and offer all-in-one functionality that will enable service providers to work with one backup solution, not several cobbled together. Of course, programs used for this type of massive undertaking should be capable. Ledbetter urged providers to skip over consumer-grade solutions and go directly for enterprise-level tools.