5 Reasons It’s Critical to Back Up Your Office 365 (and Other Cloud Services)

5 Reasons It's Critical to Back Up Your Office 365 (and Other Cloud Services)

Data loss can occur at any time without warning. It can be caused by a hard drive crash, a ransomware attack, natural disaster, or many other ways and result in lasting damage to a company that doesn’t have a reliable backup to rely on.

Managed backups are one of those parts of a technology infrastructure that isn’t always at the front of people’s minds. They’re generally thinking about the software they’re working with every day, how their computers and servers are operating, but backups are usually “out of sight, out of mind,” that is until something goes wrong.

Data loss causes downtime while a business scrambles to get their data back online and each minute of downtime is costing thousands of dollars. Most of a company’s assets are now in digital form, which is why most companies understand the need to back up their computers and servers regularly.

The average cost of downtime is $5,600 per minute.

But one area that many companies neglect when it comes to putting together a backup and recovery plan is their cloud services. They mistakenly think that all the data in their Office 365 or G Suite account is being automatically backed up the by the cloud service and they don’t need to worry about it.

This isn’t the case at all! We’ll tell you why it’s vital that you backup Office 365 and other cloud services to ensure you don’t suffer a devastating data loss incident.

Why Do I Need to Backup Cloud Services Like Office 365?

While cloud services are keeping a copy of your data that allows you to access it online from any device, that’s not the same thing as a backup and recovery structure.

Leave your cloud services data out of your backup plan, and you’re risking an incident that could cost you more than you realize. 51% of businesses that suffer catastrophic data loss close within two years.

Here are the key reasons you need to back up your cloud services data.

Cloud Services Aren’t the Same as a Backup & Recovery Tool

One of the most important parts of a backup and recovery tool is the ability to quickly restore data to a device from a cloud backup if needed. This includes not just a bunch of files, but the file and folder structure, computer settings, applications and everything else needed to start working again without having to go through installations of apps, etc.

Files in your cloud services are stored, but they’re not separately backed up. They’re just stored in a cloud system instead of on your hard drive. So if anything were to happen and you needed to transfer those files to a computer, you’d essentially just be dragging and dropping file (very time consuming), not recovering an entire device’s OS, files, folders, and apps, like backup tools are designed to do.

You Can Lose Your Files if They’re Deleted/Overwritten

Whether by accident or not, if a file or folder is deleted from your cloud services folder, it’s gone for good if you don’t have a back up in place. The cloud service is basically storing one copy of your data and updating it as a file is edited.

If someone chooses the wrong file and overwrites it, you won’t have another copy to fall back on if the data in your cloud services aren’t being backed up by a 3rd party backup service.

Retention Policies Can Cause Files to Be Lost

Office 365 retention policies for email and other files can be confusing, but you’re at the mercy of these settings when it comes to how long the cloud service retains your files. Once the retention timeframe is passed, your files will be deleted.

By backing up your Office 365 data, you can control how long you keep emails and other important data, so you’ll know that if you need them, whether it’s for litigation, data security compliance, or another reason, they’ll be there.

Cloud Services Can Have Outages Too

Cloud services aren’t infallible, their hard drives can crash, and they can also be subject to ransomware intrusions. While large companies like Google and Microsoft use redundancies to mitigate downtime or data loss, they also understand it can happen.

That’s why they recommend that users back up the data in their systems. Microsoft’s Service Agreement, under Service Availability, states:

“We strive to keep the Services up and running; however, all online services suffer occasional disruptions and outages, and Microsoft is not liable for any disruption or loss you may suffer as a result. In the event of an outage, you may not be able to retrieve Your Content or Data that you’ve stored. We recommend that you regularly backup Your Content and Data that you store on the Services or store using Third-Party Appsand Services.”

Ransomware is on the Rise

Ransomware is one of the most alarming causes of data loss. It encrypts user data, making it impossible to use and has taken down hospitals, schools, governments, and countless small businesses.

In the first quarter of 2019, ransomware attacks were already up by 195%, and in October, the FBI issued a “high-impact” ransomware warning to U.S. businesses and organizations.

With ransomware being such a large threat to small businesses and large cloud providers alike, it’s critical to keep a restorable back up copy of all your data, whether it’s stored offline or online in cloud services.

Get Help Backing Up Your Office 365 & Other Cloud Services

C Solutions has reliable backup solutions that can ensure you’re covered both for your on-premises data and files that are saved in cloud platforms like Office 365.

Schedule a free backup consultation today!  Call 407-536-8381 or reach us online.