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The Impact of Not Having a Cloud Backup Storage Strategy


Jose Alvarez

Managing Director of Infrastructure Technology

As digitization accelerates in the aftermath of the pandemic, traditional backup strategies like tape libraries and secondary sites can’t keep up with the explosive growth of critical enterprise data. Instead, more and more businesses are turning to Amazon backup storage for highly scalable, efficient data protection in the cloud – achieving fast, reliable data recovery while cutting costs and freeing IT staff to concentrate on strategy and innovation.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) backup resources offer offsite, encrypted data storage that can protect an unlimited amount of information from physical or virtual servers during a disaster or IT crisis. But as demand for cloud backups explodes, the number of platforms peddling solutions has become daunting.

In this article we will discuss the key business reasons for considering backup services and why to do it in the cloud. We will also examine why AWS stands out as the market leader – providing top-notch data durability, security and compliance, and data recovery during a disaster.

The Impact of Not Having a Strong Cloud Backup Storage Strategy

With data at the core currency of the digital economy, protecting critical enterprise information is vital to business continuity. Consider this sobering statistic from the National Archives and Records Administration: 93% of companies that suffered data center outages lasting 10 days or more during a disaster filed for bankruptcy within one year.

The average cost of this downtime: $5,600 per minute – extrapolating out to $300,000 per hour, Gartner reports.

Business impact extends beyond the cost of restoring data to encompass lost revenue and productivity. Reputational harm is another critical concern as angry customers react to interrupted service or failure to protect their sensitive information.

Unfortunately, many factors can trigger outages at on-premises data centers, including UPS (uninterruptible power supply) system failures, infrastructure server and networking failures, human error, and natural disasters like fire, floods, and hurricanes.

Cybercrime represents the fastest-growing threat: causing nearly a quarter of unplanned data center outages, the Ponemon Institute reports. Ransomware, which holds enterprise data hostage in exchange for payment, is a front-and-center concern – targeting primary company systems and their backups.

In 2020, ransomware attacks increased 150% over 2019 – and the amount paid by victims surged 300%.

However, Gartner asserts that public cloud infrastructure experiences at least 60% fewer security incidents than traditional data centers. When properly organized and executed, Amazon backup storage can offer significantly greater protection against cyberattacks than on-premises storage.

Note that while tape backups can be a good option for protecting against cyberattacks, their performance and human dependability make them less attractive. They also involve substantial, upfront capital investments and needless risk.

3 Compelling Reasons to Move Your Data Protection to the Cloud

1. Free IT staff from manual, complex backup tasks and eliminate needless risk.

Backup tape libraries are slow and obsolete, requiring expensive equipment and heavy IT involvement in replacing tapes, monitoring progress, and troubleshooting issues. Data recovery is even more painful – and mechanical failures abound.

Disk-based backups can run automatically, eliminating some tedious backup chores. But purchasing and maintaining the infrastructure required to store the immense amount of data companies now produce is prohibitive – and doesn’t alleviate the risk of keeping servers and backups at the same site.

When you do, it only takes something as common as a burst pipe soaking your equipment to destroy all your data overnight. Replicating data at a secondary on-premises site may mitigate risk but increases costs and complexity even more.

AWS backup resources alleviate the risk of on-premises solutions by storing enterprise data safely offsite. They also simplify operational complexities and reduce the burden on IT staff by automating backup workflows.

2. Easily comply with global standards and regulations.

Regulatory compliance requires many organizations to maintain secure archives for long durations, especially in highly governed industries like financial services and healthcare.

Amazon backup storage enables businesses to meet these requirements with confidence through data centers, network architecture, and archive storage classes built for security-sensitive situations. AWS regularly seeks third-party certification that ensures its storage solutions comply with thousands of global security standards and industry regulations like HIPPA, PCI, ISO, and more.

Cloud security tools provide extra compliance protection by helping companies manage data access, detect irregular activity, encrypt information, and perform audits. Organizations can also enforce write-once-read-many (WORM) policies through AWS backup resources that prevent data deletion during a specified period.

3. Automate data lifecycle management to maximize savings and efficiency.

Cloud backups make it easy to manage your data throughout its lifecycle.

Typically, newer data sets require more expensive storage solutions that allow frequent access. However, AWS tools continuously monitor access patterns, identifying data that can be automatically shifted to more cost-effective storage with less availability.

Amazon backup storage also enables data sets to be automatically archived at the end of a specified period, ensuring busy IT staff don’t miss savings opportunities surrounding aging data. Organizations can also automate the deletion of data at the end of its lifecycle.

The 4 Biggest Benefits of Amazon Backup Storage

1. On-demand scalability drives agility and flexibility.

With AWS backup resources, enterprises no longer need to wait weeks or months to procure and deploy tapes, disks, and other hardware that increase data storage. The unlimited capacity of cloud backups maximizes organizational flexibility by scaling resources within minutes.

AWS also makes it easy to eliminate unnecessary costs by scaling resources down as needs change – a challenging task with purchased infrastructure.

Scheduling cloud backups to run on-demand increases business agility as well, ensuring minimal data loss during an outage. Organizations can even synchronize data so changes to the original data set are reflected in the cloud.

2. Cut the cost of data retention.

Amazon backup storage enables enterprises to meet today’s unpredictable capacity demands by only paying for what they use – instead of committing upfront to a large capital investment for on-premises backups with limited scale.

The cloud vendor carries the cost of infrastructure and storage devices as your enterprise grows. AWS backup resources also eliminate the need for businesses to acquire software licenses for specific servers or continuously upgrade and maintain equipment.

AWS cost management tools like automated lifecycle policies help businesses achieve additional cost efficiencies. The array of storage classes AWS offers enables companies to optimize the balance of cost, volume, transfer speed, access, and analytics to their needs as well.

3. Count on reliable data recovery.

When every minute of downtime means money lost, AWS markets “99.999999999%” data durability. It takes data protection to the next level by creating and storing copies of all uploaded data on at least three separate devices across a “Region.

While many cloud providers define a region as a single data center, AWS Regions cluster data centers into multiple, isolated, and physically separate “availability zones” within a geographic area. For instance, the AWS U.S. East Region that surrounds northern Virginia contains six availability zones.

Accelerate your Cloud Adoption with Auxis AWS Cloud Services

By replicating infrastructure within each region, AWS guarantees reliable access to backup data – even if a data center experiences a disaster. AWS also offers cross-region replication to ensure global data resiliency.

On-premises capabilities can’t match that level of data durability even when following best practices.

4. Take advantage of multiple data transfer methods.

AWS offers multiple ways to optimize data transfers to the cloud. For instance, AWS Snowball helps avoid challenges associated with large-scale data transfers over the internet, like prolonged transfer times and high network costs. Using these secure, tamper-proof physical devices to transfer data can run one-fifth of the cost of high-speed internet.

For incremental data transfers, AWS offers native tools that create a seamless connection between on-premises and cloud environments. However, it also enables organizations to use third-party backup services with built-in cloud connectors.

That way, companies that already bought a license for an on-premises tool can also easily backup to AWS.

If disaster strikes, Amazon backup storage ensures your business is ready

It’s all too easy for a ransomware attack to destroy your data center beyond recovery – taking all your data along with it. Replacing on-premises backups with secure, flexible, and highly scalable AWS backup resources enables your business to better address today’s data protection challenges.

Once Amazon backup storage is running smoothly, maximizing cloud protections by evolving backups into a full disaster recovery strategy is a critical next step. For instance, you can minimize business interruption during a crisis by maintaining access to cloud servers that can be instantly infused with recovered data if on-premises equipment is destroyed.

Partnering with a reputable, AWS-certified managed services provider (MSP) like Auxis can help you build and manage an effective cloud backup and disaster recovery solution – ensuring your business is ready if disaster strikes.

Written by

Jose Alvarez
Managing Director of Infrastructure Technology
Jose leads our IT Outsourcing and Solutions practice and has extensive experience always delivering best practices. His expertise includes IT strategic planning, cost control programs, emerging technologies, IT operations and infrastructure management.

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