Should you really have backups if you’re using Microsoft 365 or Google Workplace?

With this increase in telecommuting, remote working and cloud-based computing, there are more reasons than ever to have both offsite and onsite backups. Many Microsoft 365 or Google Workplace users have begun to wonder if they really need to have backups if they use these services, but the answer is still yes. Here’s why.

What is Cloud and why do we need Cloud backups

BackupYou’ve heard of it—cloud computing—but do you know what cloud computing is and why it’s important to your organization? Simply put, cloud computing is storing data, applications, and software on remote servers instead of on local computers. Cloud computing allows users to connect from anywhere with an Internet connection. It also means that information can be retrieved from any device with a web browser because programs are hosted by third-party providers through subscriptions. Cloud storage allows users to quickly access their files without having to worry about where they are stored physically; users just pay for what they use based on their subscription model.

If you aren’t already leveraging cloud solutions in your business, here are three reasons why it might be time to start:

  • Provides Reliable Access: If people work outside of the office and need immediate access to vital information, those items can now be accessed from anywhere.

  • Makes Backup/Restoration Easier: If files were backed up locally as well as remotely, the restoration will happen much more quickly during disaster recovery operations. This approach makes recovery and backup easier and faster than traditional methods.

  • Maximizes Data Protection: Offsite protection ensures that critical company data is not lost due to unexpected events such as fires, floods, theft, tornadoes, power outages and other damaging situations. External hard drives could become corrupted due to physical damage such as drops or impacts. Cloud providers offer backup services specifically designed for small businesses so you no longer have to manually create archives nor stress over potentially damaging media assets across multiple locations.

How can we backup our data when we use Cloud services

There are three main options for backup, local storage, online storage and offsite storage. Local storage is often a problem when we’re talking about online services. Online services don’t usually give you enough space to store all your data. Offsite is what you should use when there is a lot of important data that needs to be protected from hardware failure and natural disasters. Even with redundant backups, it doesn’t hurt to have extra layers of protection. Cloud storage can be great but in most cases, an on-premise solution is recommended. If you currently use online storage then I recommend looking into ways to move your information into an on-premise solution like Network Attached Storage (NAS). A NAS device offers several benefits over cloud storage including more security, access control and customization. If you haven’t already moved to cloud services then maybe wait until new laws go into effect regarding protecting consumer data before doing so. The passing of GDPR may cause many service providers to offer additional features and better service as they work towards keeping customer data secure. That being said not every business has room for traditional network-attached storage especially those businesses who need massive amounts of expandable disk space such as those who run Hadoop clusters. In those cases, I recommend reaching out to a cloud provider such as Leapfrog Market for object persistence and backup capabilities respectively.

Where are my data stored

If your data are being stored on remote servers, then there is a good chance that one day your company may decide to cancel its contract with its provider. You don’t want to find yourself left in a situation where you lose all of your data because it was uploaded to another location without your knowledge. This can be disastrous for companies that are growing fast and need access to their data at all times. Instead, make sure that your company retains ownership of its data by storing it on servers housed inside its building. While many business owners prefer to have an online presence, some businesses prefer physical storage so they don’t rely too heavily on outside vendors who could disappear overnight. When choosing a server solution for your business, think about your needs before making any commitments, so you can ensure smooth sailing for years to come. As digital technology continues to advance, new strategies will continue to emerge for protecting information assets. But with proper planning and risk management, you’ll never have to worry about protecting your most valuable assets from theft or natural disaster ever again!

Why do I not need a Backup if I’m using Cloud based applications?


It depends on what level of subscription you buy (More expensive plans will mean safer data) but here’s something else to think about…

  • Not all information stored in cloud services like OneDrive or Google Drive is saved redundantly across multiple servers like it would be if hosted on an external hard drive that hooks directly into your computer via a USB port. Cloud providers keep files that are requested often; others might sit alone on one server waiting to be accessed again someday.

  • OneDrive’s terms of service give Microsoft perpetual, irrevocable rights to do whatever it wants with user files — including handing them over to law enforcement without a warrant. While similar language exists in Google Drive’s terms of service, its privacy policy offers somewhat stronger protections against unwarranted government snooping.

  • Your OneDrive account might be tied to other personal accounts and carry info from those other accounts. Maybe you used your school email address while signing up for your free 100GB OneDrive account, and now someone needs access to those old term papers you’ve archived there for years. You’ll need to double check who has access to what — especially before sharing anything sensitive with people outside of your company.

  • Files uploaded to Microsoft’s OneDrive may not necessarily appear instantly everywhere because users around the world could have different amounts of bandwidth available to them. So, if you send someone a link out to an Excel spreadsheet hosted on OneDrive, expect it might take longer than usual for them to download it since their network might be slower than yours. Also, keep in mind users accessing large spreadsheets containing detailed information pulled from other sources may trip anti-phishing mechanisms designed specifically to scan these types of files for malicious code.

  • Since OneDrive and Google Drive both use public domain name system (DNS) servers to resolve human-friendly Web addresses to machine-friendly IP addresses, an attacker capable of hijacking your DNS connection could block you from reaching your online files altogether. Think it can’t happen? One instance of DNS hijacking occurred in 2015 when a group of hackers hijacked Internet traffic to a set of nameservers belonging to Internet provider Verisign. While it took place on a small scale and didn’t affect many customers, it’s an example of why you can never completely trust Internet-based file storage systems. Backups should be hosted in a physically separate location from everything else.

Can I get Backups without paying for them?

Backup strategies are an integral part of your enterprise infrastructure, but they can also be a major drain on resources and costs. In many cases, cloud storage services such as Microsoft 365 and Google Workplace come with free backup plans. These plans will meet most needs for small- to medium-sized businesses. If you think paying extra for a backup plan is a waste of money, call us before making your decision. There are other options available to small businesses.


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