Have you ever imagined what you would do if you lost all your crucial data? Of course, you cant imagine. Well, there is only one way to be sure of data safety and longevity- data backup. And the best thing is; cloud backup is here to make it easy to backup your files. This article will tell you how you can achieve the best backup strategy.
There are several backup best practices using the cloud, such as using offsite storage, following the 3-2-2 rules like using remote storage, backing up your data on a regular basis, encrypting the backup, thinking about the endpoint, and taking BOYD into consideration.
Apart from learning about the best cloud backup practices, you will understand all the best online backup strategies, terms used in backup operations, pros and cons, cloud backup features, and much more. So, read on and get my take at the tail end of this piece.
Encrypting your data is the top best cloud backup best practice. It adds extra security layers, which give you peace of mind knowing you will get the exact data when you decide to recover your data.
If your data is not backed up, it is prone to theft, unauthorized access, misplaces, or compromised in a way.
Depending on your requirements, it is a good practice to determine how long you will retain your cloud backup before discarding it.
However, You should back up not all data indefinitely. Some backups can be stored for months or years, depending on your requirements.
A reputable backup solution should give you terms to adjust your cloud data backup retention. This allows you to keep many copies of your recent data and file and at the same time keep compressed versions of your previous data backups.
Below is a table showing a data retention arrangement that you can adopt:
Data Retention Period
Retained until local backups are deleted
Note: It is a general rule to retain cloud backup data for a reasonable time. Some companies are giving their users unlimited data backup options. This means you can keep your data for as long as you want- no limit.
It's standard practice to ensure your cloud backup will function when you need it. However, a backup existence doesn't mean that it can be recovered- ensure it's working all times.
Test your cloud data backup regularly to guarantee you can recover them. Most cloud backup systems have automated processes that will alert you when there is a problem with your data backup.
Cloud data backup is a very cheap process. However, knowing that doesn't mean that you should waste storage space. Ensure your backup strategy entails different approaches for different data and systems. Here are some of the questions that you should ask yourself:
Well-outlined recovery objectives bring about a good data recovery strategy. The two concepts are the cornerstone for your cloud data backup journey. Also, they help you make decisive actions to reduce downtime in case of a failure situation.
Determine the following before you do anything:
What are the cloud backup features?
Before doing anything else, it is good to understand some terms used in the backup language to help you make informed decisions on backup operations. The table below shows definitions of cloud backup concepts:
A copy of data or files used for restoring that data if it's corrupted or lost.
Disk space with information about each data block currently stored. It is shared with all backup server configurations.
Using backup a checkpoint to bring back your systems to their previous state
Guidelines instruct a backup agent on what to back up, how often, and retention terms.
Several blocks stored together.
A group of data from a file
A system data checkpoint, primarily a backup
Cloud Backup agent
It is a program on your server that helps you perform a backup or restoration.
A method of protecting data or files contents using a key or password. Users with the password or key can access and read the data.
The frequency in which data changes
Where bundles or other files are stored, they are used to restore your data.
Cloud backup strategy is also known as remote backup or online backup. It is a strategy used to send a copy of files or database to a secondary location, specifically off-site, to store them safely to be used in case the system fails.
The secondary servers are hosted by a third party who charges clients based on:
A good cloud data backup helps bolster your data protection without adding too much work on your shoulders.
Many cloud backup providers charge their customers yearly or monthly. It is relatively cheaper to pay annually than monthly.
How does cloud backup strategy work?
Cloud backup serves as an off-site option for many users. Below are the steps for a cloud backup strategy:
There are different ways you can do a perfect cloud backup strategy that will fit your backup plans. Below are types of cloud backup you might want to adopt:
Online Cloud Backup Systems
You may opt for hardware alternatives that link data backup to a cloud backup solution. These facilities include disk capacity along with a backup server and backup software.
These appliances provide seamless links to the cloud provides and backup services. Some of the vendors that give such facilities include but are not limited to Rubrik, Quantum, StorageCraft, Asigra, Dell EMC, Unitrends, and Cohesity.
These vendors are the best in terms of the most recent backup retention. In addition, you can make any recovery from the local backup copy, which saves transmission costs and time.
Back up directly to the public cloud
Another way to store your data is by copying resources to a public cloud. This means writing your data directly to providers like Microsoft Azure or AWS. Here, you use your own data backup software to create a copy to send to a cloud storage solution.
The cloud storage then provides a destination and keeps the data safe. It doesn't specifically offer a backup application. It is important to note that you may need additional data protection options with public cloud backup services.
Back up to a service provider
Here, you write your data to a data cloud service vendor who offers backup solutions in a data center.
The service provider may have commercially-available applications for your backup needs, or it can provide you with backup software that you will use to send data.
With the increased use of technology, backup is no longer an unknown term. However, the backup concept existed way before we gave it the same name.
When people stored essential files in a different place separate from the original one, that was backing up taking place. This would serve as a backup if one lost the original document or somehow corrupted it.
The technology companies took over the concept, they didn't change it, but they provided new resources to make backing up more accessible and faster.
There are three types of cloud backup methods: full, differential, and incremental.
Let me now dive into each of the above types in detail.
As I stated earlier, backing up stated earlier in the days. It is essential to know when to store your backups. There are different ways to store backups, including traditional methods and newer advanced ones. The types of storage media have changed over the years, seeing when they were invented later.
There are numerous backup storage media such as DVDs, CDs, Blu-Rays, punch cards, floppy disks, external hard disks, and cloud storage services.
Before you decide where to save your backups, it's good to figure out how long you want the backup to be stored in the medium. Each medium has its life span, as shown in the table below:
Date of Invention
From few GB to TB
5 - 10 years
Few GBs to TB
1970 - 1990
10 years plus
USD flash drive
A few MB to GB
10 years plus
CD or CD ROM
80 minutes or 700 MB
25 - 50 years
60 minutes or 340 MB
25 - 50 years
KB to a few MB
3 - 5 years
A few MB to GB
10 years plus
A few MB to GB
1994 - 1995
25 - 50 years
Online backup services usually include a Web-based admin console that allows you to access the data and monitor the health of your backups. The backed-up files are encrypted and stored in the provider's data centers.
Before choosing an online backup service, its good to consider the pros and cons of the service:
Advantages of online backup services
Disadvantages of online backup services
What are the best cloud backup service providers?
Choosing the best cloud backup vendors can be a challenging task. Before you settle on one, review their SLAs, long-term costs, security, and pricing plans. The table below shows some of the best cloud backup service providers:
Cloud Backup Providers
Microsoft Azure Backup
Sends backups to the Azure cloud automatically. In addition, its recovery automates replication to conduct backup for private Windows infrastructure.
Offers Cyber Backup Cloud, a hybrid cloud backup, as a service product. Acronis Cyber Backup Cloud protects virtual, physical, and cloud environments and includes the Pay-as-you-go business model.
It provides personal and business cloud backup and cloud storage—Backblaze stores data in storage pods on open-source hardware platforms and cloud-based Backblaze Vault file systems. You can access backup data from a web browser on your mobile device or computer. You will download the restore via SSL.
IDrive is aimed at consumers and small businesses and includes snapshots, synchronization services, and hybrid data protection.
It allows customers to use Forever Cloud to indefinitely back up their private clouds. In addition, it offers several disaster recovery (DRaaS) options as a service for recovery.
Offers cloud backup through CloudConnect products. Service providers can work with Veeam to create backup and recovery destinations in the cloud.
Druva has three main products. While enterprise-level DruvainSync is endpoint-centric and backs up data between physical and public cloud storage, Phoenix backs up and restores records in the cloud of distributed physical and virtual servers. The software agent used. In addition, Druva acquired Cloud Ranger in 2018 to protect AWS data.
Arcserve has expanded its Unified Data Protection (UDP) service with the purchase of Zetta. This product includes Arcserve UDP Cloud Direct Direct-to-Cloud Disaster Recovery and Backup. Cloud protection is aimed at midsize businesses.
Carbonite sells to consumers, SMBs, and businesses. The company's products are secure documents, email, music, photos, and settings, available to Windows and Mac users. In March 2018, Carbonite acquired competitor Mozy from Dell EMC and integrated its services into its products. In 2019, Carbonite acquired cybersecurity provider Webroot. In late 2019, content management provider OpenText acquired Carbonite.
Asigra is a pioneer in cloud backup. Cloud backups have a built-in malware engine to prevent ransomware from breaking into your backups.
It goes without saying that data loss can be very costly to any of us, and backups should be part of cyber hygiene for everyone. In a sense, backup is intended to protect your data investment. Now let's think ahead so as not to lose this investment. Cloud backup is one of the best options to keep your data safe.