With an ever-growing number of people working from home, primarily due to the global Covid-19 pandemic, cybersecurity attacks are on the rise, meaning that dealing with security risks is an ongoing journey for enterprises.
By Kate Mollett
IDC predicts that by 2023, 60% of data will be generated at the edge by people working from home and from devices outside of the corporate firewall. While at the same time, many corporate cloud services are already being rendered from locations outside the data centre.
This has given rise to ransomware attacks as many employees who are working remotely have their firewalls and access points configured to allow remote access. This has also seen an increase in ransomware attacks against software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications. While SaaS applications are generally secure, hackers are able to get through an end user’s compromised operating system and attack the cloud services themselves.
Enterprises need to realise that security is an ongoing process, starting with being proactive and putting the right security measures in place to protect their data. This should be followed by monitoring their IT environments routinely for abnormalities, such as a massive change in data capacities. Organisations should also be in a position to recover their data and be recovery-ready in case of data loss due to a ransomware attack.
Traditional backup not good enough
However, many organisations are finding that their current backup solutions do not fulfil their needs, as traditional on-premise data backup solutions are often costly. In addition to this high cost, traditional solutions require significant maintenance, impact production time and put businesses at risk of data loss.
Backup-as-a-service (BaaS) is the modern alternative approach to traditional data backup solutions, as it allows enterprises to purchase backup and recovery services from cloud-based providers, instead of having to build and maintain in-house data backup solutions.
For organisations that have reached the limits of their on-premises backup capabilities and for those who don’t want to invest money into an in-house IT infrastructure in the first place, BaaS is proving to be the ideal solution.
In essence, enterprises that use BaaS solutions purchase backup and recovery services from outside providers. BaaS is able to connect systems to a private, public or hybrid-cloud environment, depending on an organisation’s current backup or storage strategy, and is entirely managed by the outside provider.
The most important advantage of BaaS when comparing to a traditional on-premises data backup solution is ease of management. It removes the need to rotate storage devices, manually moving data to off-site locations and performing integrity checks and deduplication. All of this is managed by the BaaS provider.
In addition, BaaS is less costly than tape drives, servers and other hardware and software elements that are necessary to perform a backup. Enterprises will spend less on backup media, transportation of media to remote locations for safekeeping, and on costs associated with managing backup systems.
Some BaaS solutions from certain vendors also provide the necessary data compliance in the form of regulation. This includes the right to be forgotten, also known as the right to erasure, and the ability to remove data along with the full content index. It also enables enterprises to back up from any cloud environment, with ransomware protection, processes and services bundled in.
A BaaS solution also offers organisations a greater degree of ease of recovery, due to multiple levels of redundancy. Should data be lost or deleted, backups are available and easily located, and multiple levels of redundancy mean that BaaS stores multiple copies of data in locations independent of each other.
When taking into account the advantages and benefits offered by BaaS, it is no longer advisable for most enterprises to invest in on-premise data backup solutions. Cloud-based backup solutions are more cost effective, require less maintenance and are proven to be safer and more reliable than traditional backup solutions.
Kate Mollett is the regional director of Commvault South Africa