20 benefits of moving backup and disaster recovery to the cloud

World Backup Day (31 March) is here – and it’s a not-so-subtle reminder of the dangers of not backing up, securing and protecting your corporate data. As ransomware incidents and data breaches make daily headlines, data protection should be top-of-mind for today’s businesses.

In fact, as data continues to scatter beyond the data centre and into cloud services and onto mobile devices, businesses are looking toward a holistic data backup strategy. Meanwhile, organisations must think about how to address important governance needs including compliance, regulatory and litigation matters.

Why is protecting data such a challenge today? First, consider that 40 per cent of corporate data resides beyond the data centre on endpoints and in the cloud. Many companies today are adopting an endpoint backup solution to protect and restore data that resides on mobile devices (think BYOD) and taking into account the increased need for data governance due to regulation and litigation. Critical data has moved beyond servers and endpoints to cloud apps.

Traditionally, businesses have cobbled together multiple software solutions to address disaster recovery (DR), backup and archival as part of a larger data protection practice which is inefficient and costly. Today, the public cloud offers greater efficiency for IT, more reliability for the business, and improved security for data. On top of the cloud’s security and scale benefits, consolidating workflows such as backup, disaster recovery, and PaaS opportunities in the cloud can save enterprises anywhere from one-half to one-third of their costs. The public cloud’s reliability, security, and scalability shows the transformational potential to move disparate workloads to a single cloud platform for greater efficiency and agility.

Here are 20 real-world benefits/steps/items to consider when moving backup, archival and disaster recovery (DR) to a single, native cloud platform.

Backup and Restore

  1. Automatically protect data without the need for expensive on-site hardware and administrative overhead.
  2. The OpEX model (versus CapEX) enables enterprises to pay only for what is used, improving Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).
  3. Reliable, durable, fast and cost-effective data recovery enabled by an enterprise-grade multi-region public cloud infrastructure.
  4. Your data can be fully encrypted in transit and at rest with no vendor access to your data.

Disaster Recovery (DR)

  1. Eliminate the need to replicate your production system in full at a secondary company managed data center. DR is available on demand in the cloud.
  2. Replicated virtual machines can be pushed to any global location, making spin-up in the event of disaster efficient.
  3. With virtual machines replicated off-site, system downtime (and its resulting impact on productivity) can be reduced to minutes.
  4. Cloud-based systems enable enterprises to store replicated virtual machines to multiple storage regions for even greater protection and redundancy.

Archival

  1. More efficient storage combined with a best of breed deduplication technology allows for data to be cost effectively retained long term.
  2. Streamlining the archival process lowers cost and eliminates reliance on tape, which is an error-prone and manual process.
  3. Because the data is stored in the cloud, it’s at the ready for data mining, legal and compliance needs.

Test and Development

  1. Test/Dev replicated systems can be instantly spun-up as needed, on demand, with no dedicated hardware or software for greater flexibility and speed.
  2. By leveraging a copy of a virtual machine in the cloud, tests and validation can be run against a copy of the production data with no interference to critical production environments.
  3. A single replicated virtual machine can be centrally managed and replicated as much as needed, even across geographies so test/dev can be easily managed around the clock.
  4. No need for separate Test/Dev systems as you can repurpose available virtual machines.

Data Analytics

  1. Analyse backed up data to understand risks and challenges around dormant data, storage growth and data classification.
  2. A cloud storage model can increase visibility into existing data which can then be better leveraged for additional business value.

Converged Architecture

  1. It’s a single data source – not multiple data sources – so you save on resources spent moving data across systems, and eliminate redundancies.
  2. Organisations can turn on/off services on-demand by leveraging an existing public cloud account such as AWS or Azure.
  3. Converge multiple workloads together in a ‘single pane of glass’ while gaining the assurance that your data, stored on the public cloud infrastructure, adheres to global data privacy regulations.

As we cross another World Backup Day, consider doing a “cost-benefit” analysis and examining the benefits of using the cloud for data protection.

In our modern 24/7, mobile and cloud-based workplace, it’s vital to stay one step ahead when it comes to data protection - your employees, partners and customers will thank you for it.

Jaspreet Singh, CEO of Druva

Image source: Shutterstock/Maksim Kabakou