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Office 365 Backups: What’s protected and what’s not may make you cringe…

Office 365 allows organizations to become more agile, benefiting from cloud-based access to your emails, files and office-based programs. Many companies think putting your data in the cloud is synonymous with backup but that is simply not the case. In fact, according to an Aberdeen Group Report entitled SaaS Data Loss: The Problem You Didn’t Know You Had, 32% of companies surveyed lost data from the cloud. Then how do you prevent data loss? Just like any other software, you need to be aware of exactly what is protected and what isn’t and make modifications to your data strategy.

In this case, one of the most important aspects of the system is what data is actually protected and accessible with native Office 365 backup. Let’s take a few different scenarios:

Scenario 1: Simple Mistake

You need to restore an item that you accidentally deleted. Well, with office 365, this is a very easy restoration. Simply drag and click. Even if you deleted something months ago, Both SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business use site collection recycle bins that retain deleted data for up to 186 days so you are safe. Phew…

Scenario 2: Human Error

You deleted something that you want to get back that is important for compliance but its been quite a while. You reach out to your system admin and expect that a litigation hold will take care of the issue. The problem? When the system admin was trying to help you restore, he accidentally deleted your messages. Now what? That WAS the backup, now you have no restore capabilities and are in hot water!

Scenario 3: Malicious Intent

Your company tries to keep their employees happy but inevitably there is someone who becomes unhappy. Recently, a system admin decided that he didn’t like the company he was working for and decided to leave. In fact, he was so angry at the company that he decided to make himself an eDiscovery Manager and change the litigation hold policies. The problem is that no one noticed for 6 months. Now your company has a huge compliance issue and no way to restore the data.

Scenario 4: Cyber-security Attack

Let’s say you are a manufacturing company that must maintain information on export and import for compliance. You are aware of the laws and are making sure to maintain your litigation hold policies to the letter of the law. Out of nowhere a cyber thief comes along and decides to target your company. Now they are holding your data ransom. You may have correctly backed up your data in the system but that won’t matter unless you can actually get to the data. In this scenario, there is often only one choice, pay the ransom.

Office 365 protects your data on a regular basis, but it doesn’t ensure data availability. This is the major distinction between having your data available and THINKING you do. Office 365 doesn’t plan for what can go wrong, it only plans for a perfectly working system. As we all know, that just doesn’t happen in today’s ever-changing technology landscape. Here’s a little guide to help you identify Office 365 data availability.

Need help protecting your Office 365 environment? Take a look at ComportSecure’s Backup as a Service.

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