The use of cloud technology has seen aggressive growth in the last few years. From cloud storage to cloud computing, it seems everyone is using the cloud for everything these days. But, before the cloud expanded into what it now is, it began as a tool for backing up data. And cloud backup is still a significant use of the cloud today. When done correctly, it offers organizations a simple, effective solution to keep their data safe.
What is Cloud Backup?
So, what is cloud backup? Well, in simple terms, it’s the process of having your files and information stored on off-site servers. One of the many benefits of cloud backup is that it frees up space on your internal servers and computers. And this type of backup is rapidly becoming an essential part of every business plan.
How Cloud Backup Works
At its core, cloud backup is the process of transferring copies of your data to a remote storage system. A third-party service provider typically hosts this storage system and charges users based on capacity, bandwidth, or number of users. Then, in the case of equipment failure, corruption, or data loss, you still have access to your preserved files.
An organization will set up exactly how they want their cloud backup to work, including the number of copies and the backup schedule. For example, you could have your systems backed up every hour, day, week, or month. You can also decide whether you would like your cloud backup to continue to store old copies along with new copies or replace your old with the new.
We recommend storing multiple copies of your data from different periods. This way, if your system is corrupted without your knowledge and your backup service copies the corrupted version, you have past versions to fall back on.
Benefits of Cloud Backup
There are several benefits to using a cloud backup. Let’s go over a few of them here.
1. Reliable and Effortless
Once your cloud backup is set up, it requires little to no effort to maintain. Automatic scheduled backups are easy to establish and help keep your stored data current. Businesses also don’t have to worry about maintaining the infrastructure. You can go about your day knowing copies of your data are securely stored without you having to do anything.
2. Cost Saving
For small to mid-sized organizations without a lot of data, cloud backups can offer considerable cost savings. Onsite data centers and servers are extremely expensive and difficult to maintain. Because of this, switching to a cloud solution can help organizations save on these costs.
By storing your data off-site on a separate network, you can protect your business from certain types of cyber threats like ransomware. Even if you suffer a data breach onsite, you have access to your secure backups in the cloud. On top of that, many providers offer 24/7 monitoring, management, and reporting. These protocols help ensure that your data is safe at all times.
If you are worried about your data being intercepted during a data transfer, don’t. All major cloud backup providers will provide encryption services for your information. This way, even if your data is intercepted, it will remain secure.
One of the most significant advantages of cloud backup is that it’s scalable. You can store as much or as little information as you need, and you only pay for what you use. No more worrying about buying new equipment in preparation for future growth, or running out of capacity in the cloud. What you need is what you get.
Disadvantages of Cloud Backup
Although there are many benefits of cloud backup, there are also some things you will want to consider before making the switch. Everything in life has trade-offs, and cloud backups are no different. Here are a few of the factors that you will want to discuss within your organization.
Speed is a factor in cloud backups because while your information is being copied and stored by your provider, it can slow down network speeds. As a result, organizations must strategically plan the timing of backups so that it won’t affect business functions and operations.
2. Large Data Costs
Like we mentioned above, for companies that don’t have enormous amounts of data, online backups can be exceedingly cost-effective. However, for organizations that need to store extensive amounts of information, the costs can quickly creep up. Because of the scalability of the cloud, you must be aware of how much data you need to back up and how much that will cost. If you aren’t, you may get hit with a hefty bill that you weren’t expecting.
3. Loss of Control
Because cloud backups utilize third-party providers, it can be frightening for some organizations to make the switch. This is because they feel like they are losing control of their data. It’s stored off-site on a third-party’s infrastructure, and it’s managed by that third-party as well. However, rest assured that this doesn’t mean data is any less secure or protected.
Because your data is no longer solely under your roof, though, it’s essential to do your research when choosing your provider. Learn as much as you can about the companies equipment, history, and security procedures (both physical and digital).
Cloud Backup In Summary
So, if you’re not currently using a cloud backup solution, we highly recommend you look into one. It can save you time, money, and hassle- especially as cyber attack rates are steadily increasing. Cloud backups can be your saving grace if your network is hacked or ransomed. Some organizations have lost everything from a single attack. Many are forced to shut their doors after they’ve been breached. Don’t let this happen to you- look into your backup options now, before it’s too late.
To learn more about cloud computing & backup, check out our Ultimate Guide To Cloud Computing!