As part of their digital transformation efforts, organizations of all shapes and sizes are embracing technologies that allow them to analyze massive data sets in order to gain market insights, optimize operations and create personalized customer experiences. However, these efforts are being undermined by inadequate data protection practices.
Backup processes have become more challenging than ever, with one recent study finding that more than half of all backups fail. The resulting data loss seriously impedes digital transformation by limiting an organization’s ability to share, integrate and analyze relevant data.
The continued reliance on legacy IT and outdated data protection capabilities is contributing to these challenges. As a result, more organizations are looking to modernize their data protection practices through the adoption of cloud-based backup solutions.
In a recent Vanson Bourne survey of 3,000 IT decision-makers, 77 percent reported they plan to migrate to cloud-first backup processes over the next two years. The cloud can help improve backup reliability and enhance their ability to digitize and automate other IT processes.
The Case for Cloud
A shift to cloud-based backup seems almost inevitable given the increasing complexity of conventional on-premises backup processes. Research shows that IT staffs are often tasked with administering 10 or more devices for storage, backup and disaster recovery — each with separate processes and management systems. This consumes an inordinate amount of IT staff and budget resources that could be focused on other projects that contribute to increased digitalization.
Worse yet, these resources are largely wasted on supporting outdated technologies and processes that weren’t designed for today’s IT realities. Conventional solutions meant for backing up on-premises systems are ill-suited for today’s environment in which data is spread across multiple data centers, cloud platforms, edge servers and endpoint devices.
According to the Vanson Bourne study, these legacy practices have contributed to a 58 percent failure rate for backups and restores. Additionally, 95 percent of survey respondents said they experienced unexpected outages in the past year.
Cloud and hybrid backup solutions with increased automation and data-reduction technologies are essential elements of backup modernization. Pure cloud backup involves copying data directly to a provider’s cloud infrastructure through agents installed locally on company computers and user devices. In hybrid cloud backup, data is copied to an onsite appliance which in turn synchronizes the data to a cloud provider.
Backup by the Numbers
Cloud backup makes it easier for organizations to adopt the “3-2-1” data protection strategy that is widely considered to be an industry best practice. This approach calls for you to make three separate copies of data, store two of them on different types of media, with one located at an offsite location. Having at least one copy isolated in the cloud provides an important safeguard against data loss.
Increased automation is another benefit. In addition to eliminating error-prone manual processes, automated backups and file syncing reduces the backup window and relieves your staff of much of the management burden. Backups occur on schedule, and data is automatically compressed, deduplicated and encrypted. Automated testing features also ensure that all data and applications can be recovered if there is a disruption.
While the cloud offers significant management benefits, it is not without challenges. For example, bandwidth consumption during cloud backups can sometimes impact application performance. Searching and recovering data in the cloud can be difficult and time consuming. Organizations with limited manpower and expertise may be better served with a managed backup service.
Verteks helps customers optimize their backup environment with Datto’s portfolio of cloud-based backup solutions. We can reduce the costs and complexity by orchestrating cloud-to-cloud backups directly to Datto’s private cloud. We will also test backups frequently to ensure they are working properly and readily available. Call us to learn more about using our managed service to eliminate much of the uncertainty surrounding data protection.