Have you ever had that gut-wrenching moment when you realise that a critical piece of data or vital email has been deleted? It can happen to the best of us. Typically, after perhaps muttering a few choice words, we begin retrieval efforts, hoping against hope that not only has the data in question been backed up, but also that it can be quickly found. Still, if you are using Microsoft 365, everything important is backed up safely, right?
For most businesses, Microsoft 365 plays a huge role in all parts of the business. The range of productivity and efficiency apps included in the subscription is constantly growing, with the Office mainstays like Word, Excel and Outlook joined by some exciting new technologies.
While it is true that your deleted Microsoft 365 emails and documents are retained, this is typically for 30 days, not forever. Try doing a little detective work and checking the terms of your agreement, so that you know the exact situation. 30 days does give you a bit of breathing space when you realise immediately that you shouldn’t have clicked delete just yet, but often the moment of truth comes later, when you find yourself needing that customer contract or email from the boss. By then, it may be too late. A common scenario we encounter is that an employee has gone on holiday, or left the business, and the data loss is not uncovered until a few months down the track.
A lot of organisations have found this out the hard way
32% of those surveyed had experienced cloud data loss, almost half of that caused by users deleting data. Those we have encountered have inevitably assumed that retrieval would be simple, until they tried. One business leader recently approached us for help after spending considerable time in-house attempting to find an extremely important email that contained evidence needed for a court case. Our consultants explored all possible avenues, but the email was gone. Not only did that business bear the expense of their own time, and a few consulting hours – they also suffered the costly outcome of losing that vital piece of information.
That type of scenario is unfortunately common. The myth of everything sitting conveniently in the cloud forever is only one part of the challenge, though. Even if your lost document still exists somewhere, it isn’t necessarily easy or even possible to find. A needle in a haystack would sometimes be a more tempting prospect. When you used an email server in-house, you probably had something in place to deal with the inevitable ‘oops’ moment, and fortunately, a variety of tools have emerged to perform the same task for your Microsoft 365 data.
A Microsoft 365 backup solution that is the right fit
We like to put products through their paces, vetting them thoroughly to make sure they are fit for purpose. When finding a tool to handle our own Microsoft 365 backup (yes, even experienced tech people sometimes click delete when they shouldn’t), we considered ease of use, reliability, and the ability to retain data permanently. We eventually opted for a subscription service that, at $6 per user per month, has already paid for itself when we needed to find an old client project proposal in order to secure a piece of business.
There are a couple of other things we would recommend you consider as you manage your cloud data risk. First, aside from accidental deletion, data can be lost through malicious activity ranging from disgruntled employees to ransomware. In this industry, we have seen it all. The tool we chose is totally separate from our own systems, so data can be recovered quickly and without fuss, without paying cyber-criminals for the privilege.
The second is the legislative and regulatory situation of your business. If you are required to retain data, perhaps for several years, it is essential that you demonstrate compliance beyond the limited inclusion with your SaaS providers. This is typically a discussion we have with our Microsoft 365 customers, which is why, in contrast to an overall average of around a third of businesses using a SaaS backup solution, most are now using this extra level of assurance.
Need to safeguard your cloud data and recover it any time? Chat to our friendly Microsoft experts today about finding a cloud backup that is the right fit for your business.
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*Statistics from The Aberdeen Group: SaaS Data Loss: The Problem You Didn’t Know You Had