Yes, You need to Back Up Microsoft 365

by SEP Blog Team | Data Protection, Microsoft 365 backup

Data loss is a clear and present danger to U.S. businesses across the country. The first thing we need to do is establish the fact that Microsoft does not have any obligation to back-up your data in Microsoft Office 365. The only things they commit to doing with your data is make it available anywhere, anytime and to protect it from known malware and viruses. You can verify this by reviewing the Microsoft Online service level agreement that comes with your subscription. Plus, the only penalty that Microsoft imposes on themselves is a percentage refund of your subscription fees based on their criteria.

MCSE Experts in their own words

Microsoft MVP Brien Posey says that “you might not have as many options for restoring your data as you might think. As such, it is critically important to understand your options for disaster recovery in an Office 365 environment.”

“Microsoft says they also perform traditional backups of Office 365 servers. However, those backups are used for internal purposes only if they experience a catastrophic event that wiped out large volumes of customer data…”

He also points out that there is no “provision for reverting a mailbox server to an earlier point in time (such as might be necessary if a virus corrupted all the mailboxes on a server).

If you think about it, MS365 is a software as a service (SaaS) product. It provides the entire Microsoft Office Suite including Word, Excel, PowerPoint as your primary productivity tools. What you type into these apps online is your primary source of data. It replaces your traditional way of creating data using apps that exist on your computer and savings them to your hard drive. So, once you’re done creating a Word doc, for example, that doc only exists online. If anything were to happen to that document it would be gone forever. What could go wrong?

Microsoft Office 365 has been affected by viruses and malware before. In July 2016, a ransomware called Cerber was in the headlines because of a monstrous zero-day attack on Office 365 subscribers. Plus, Microsoft reported that about 150,000 Windows users were infected by Cerber through 161 identified campaigns. In 2017 over 300,000 machines were taken down by the WannaCry malware alone. 11.7 million USD was paid on data security in 2017, according to a study conducted in 2017 by Ponemon Institute LLC and Accenture. “Because contacts and documents are synced between the device and the Office 365 servers, the wipeout also deletes data on the server-side. With no backups available, a company can lose valuable information.”

There is always the possibility of employee error via an accidental deletion of data that is then, not recoverable; or an employee accidentally deleting a document while editing or providing new information to the document. A disgruntled employee can wreak havoc on your data by deleting large blocks of information.

The only real way to protect your business from data loss in 365 caused by a cyber attack or employee error is by having a proactive and complete backup and archive of your data. If you don't have these safeguards, your business can be severely impacted by any loss of data. Office 365 does not keep complete backups and archives of your past data. What is needed is a backup tool that can guarantee reliable backups and archiving and can handle the jobs easily and quickly.

Here are five Critical Backup issues facing Microsoft 365 users:

  1. External and internal security threats
  2. Managing hybrid email migrations and deployments to Office 365
  3. Accidental deletion
  4. Retention policy confusions and gaps
  5. Legal and compliance requirements

In Conclusion- SEP Software to the Rescue

Microsoft Office 365, as well as other SaaS providers, are good about taking on the responsibility of software uptime and its underlying infrastructure. But it is the responsibility of business owners, IT managers and CIO’s to manage and protect their vital business data. SEP Software, the developer of a platform independent backup and disaster recovery solution, is an expert in this area. SEP can advise companies on how to avoid such situations and provide expert assistance creating a thorough backup and disaster recovery strategy to eliminate the possibility of blackmail during a cyber-attack. Using SEP as your backup software, a company can confidently restore all critical data after a ransom attack.

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