Microsoft may host the infrastructure for Office 365, but this doesn’t supersede your responsibility to maintain a backup of your data. In fact, ownership of your data in the cloud — being able to set up, access, recover or move it — is your obligation, not Microsoft’s. It is so easy to order and start using Microsoft Office 365, it can be quite difficult for businesses to understand why backup of Microsoft office is essential or why a company would still need a 3rd party to assist with it.
Here are the key reasons why Microsoft Office 365 backup is essential:
If you delete an Office 365 user, that deletion is replicated across the network whether you mean for that or not. This includes the deletion of their personal SharePoint site and OneDrive data. We’ve seen more than a few clients accidentally tag an item to be purged from the mailbox database. Once this happens that item is unrecoverable if you don’t have any other backup in place.
Retention policy gaps
Technology is evolving at an astonishingly fast pace, as are the policies used to manage it. Because of that, Microsoft’s retention policy only provides limited coverage for situational data loss. Important types of recovery, including short-term backups, long-term archives, and point-in-time restorations are only possible if you are using an additional Office 365 backup solution.
Internal security threats
Most people think of hackers and viruses when the term “cybersecurity” is mentioned. However, businesses often fall pretty to threats posted by employees, both intentionally and unintentionally. Microsoft has no way of knowing the difference between a regular user and a terminated employee attempting to delete critical company data before s/he departs. Alternatively, some users accidentally invite serious threats by downloading infected files. Independent backup solutions can help manage user access and detect unusual activity to protect some of these threats.
External security threats
We have all seen countless examples of damage done by malware and viruses. External threats can sneak in through emails and attachments, even when employees are educated about them. Exchange Online is unable to handle serious system-wide attacks, so it is important to conduct your own regular backups to ensure a separate copy of your data is uninfected. This will enable your organization to recover quickly if disaster does strike.
Legal & compliance requirements
Sometimes you need to retrieve old files or other types of data amid legal action that you never expected. Microsoft has built-in a number of safety nets for this type of situation, such as “Litigation Hold,” but these are often not robust enough. For example, if you accidentally delete a user, their on-hold mailbox and other data will all be permanently deleted. Having an independent backup strategy can therefore save you the headaches and stress associated with fines and penalties.
Managing migrations to Office 365
When transitioning from on-premises Exchange to Office 365 Exchange Online, organizations need a window of time when their data exists on both servers. Many even leave a small portion of their legacy system in place for control and added flexibility. However, having data in hybrid setups like this can pose management and security challenges, which only an independent backup service can address.
If you haven’t given thought to or been aware of these gaps in Office 365 backup services, it is critical to address them now!
To learn more about recovery services for Microsoft Office 365 and control of and protect your organization’s Office 365 data contact Biscuit IT.