Adding a “Cloud” Tier as part of your Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Plans

Aug 2011

Adding a “Cloud” Tier as part of your Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Plans

Posted by Samantha Morris

Cloud Backup and Recovery plays a significant role in data protection strategies, but there are slight nuances to its use in these situations. In each case, a copy of data is stored in a cloud container and can be retrieved to facilitate recovery.

  • Backup Software-as-a-Service is when a service provider offers an online backup application and cloud-based storage for backup process. Backup SaaS can leverage the Public and Private Clouds as well as take a Hybrid approach, by combining both on premise and off-premise storage. The solutions provided by Asigra service providers fall under this category. 
  • Cloud Storage Services provide a third-party, cloud-based tier of storage for  on-premises backup and archive solutions. On-premises, licensed backup products integrate with cloud storage providers’ APIs to enable the transfer of data into the cloud tier. This tier includes lower-end solutions  like Dropbox,, EMC Mozy, Carbonite, Acronis, JungleDisk, etc.
  • Cloud-based Disaster Recovery combines both cloud computing and cloud stage services to enable failover to a cloud-based instance on an on-premises server.   

Using the cloud as a tier

The “Cloud” can provide an additional tier of storage, working well to compliment data backup as a replacement to tape. The “Cloud” is unlimited in size and by employing a Managed Services Provider, can eliminate the resources required to acquire, install, configure, maintain and provision on-premises backup storage. This also provides a key component in Disaster Recovery planning and operation – the backing up of data to an off-site location.

You may be thinking about leveraging the cloud in your business – and you’re not alone.  Your primary concern is probably security, access and control once data leaves the boundaries of your company’s firewall. It’s important to look for service providers who can provide you with FIPS 140-2 Encryption certification and SAS 70 or ISO 27001 accredited data centers. You’ll also need assurances that you can easily retrieve and move your data if necessary – all of which should be outlined and detailed in the Service Level Agreements.

The greatest thing about implementing Cloud Backup for your business is you will likely see an improvement in recovery time objective when recovering individual files and small data sets because they can be located and sent back directly over the network. This alone beats Tape backup hands down.     

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