Why Cloud Backup Isn't Enough

There are hundreds, if not thousands of cloud backup services to choose from.  There are sync services like Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft OneDrive that people use as a backup, and there are true backup services like Carbonite or Mozy.  All of these services are well built and feature rich, so why aren’t they enough when it comes to your business backup?


One issue is actually used as a selling point for many of these services.  ‘Set it and forget it’ sounds great, but your backups shouldn’t be run that way.  For a file sync service like Dropbox or Google Drive that mentality works well because you save a file to the cloud and you usually go looking for it on another device soon – and you notice soon if that file didn’t sync properly.  For backups however, you don’t look for them until there is a problem so you won’t notice a missing backup until it’s too late.  Backups should not be set and forget, they should be monitored and cared for like a garden.


Another issue is availability.  Most cloud services are very reliable these days, but down time does happen.  All of the big names have had down time at some point and you can bet that if there is going to be down time, it’ll be just when you need your backups most.  Even if the service is fine, your own internet connection is a weak point.  Consider a building fire or water leak that destroys your computers and quite possibly your router.  You’re not going to have internet service back up and running immediately so you can’t access your backups immediately either.  There is also the chance that whatever service you use will change ownership, be hacked, or simply go out of business and all of those things could result in your backups being out of reach temporarily or even permanently.


One more thing to consider is recovery time.  Even with high speed internet, restoring a large part of a backup, or especially your entire backup, will take time.  Depending on the size of the restore, it could take hours or days or weeks to get everything downloaded from the cloud service.  Your own internet connection could be super fast, but that doesn’t always mean the service you use will be able to send your data that fast.  If you’re trying to get your monthly billing done, or your weekly payroll, that time delay could be a major problem.  Some cloud services can send you a drive with all of your data on it, but those services have a hefty price tag and still rely on shipping times so you’ll be waiting 24-48 hours even then.


Lastly, and arguably the most important thing to consider, is privacy.  Most cloud services today do use encryption to protect your data, but how they employ that encryption isn’t always perfect.  Anything that is encrypted with modern software is basically impossible to read without the key, but the security of that key is what is sometimes lacking.  Many cloud providers create their own encryption keys for your data and store them on their servers.  They usually protect those keys fairly well, but there is always a chance that a hacker or bad employee could get those keys and therefore access to your data.  Some cloud providers use your password as your encryption key, and while that’s better, those providers still store your password on their servers and unless you’re using a password that is greater than 15 characters in length it is also at risk of simply being guessed by a hacker.



Wilson IT’s Managed Backup Service is called ‘managed’ for a reason.  We monitor your backups to make sure they are happening and to ensure that you’re covered well.  We periodically review your backups to make sure that new employees/data/computers are being backed up and we also periodically perform a restore test with you so you know that everything is functioning as it should be.


Wilson IT’s Managed Backup Service first keeps a local backup at your location for the most convenient and quickest restore possible.  This first layer of your backup functions without any reliance on us.  If the worst somehow happens and we were to ever shut down, that first layer would continue to perform backups and allow you to restore.  Because that first layer is local, your internet connection being up or down or our company being available or not, won’t affect backups or restores at all.

In the event that your place of business is destroyed, including the local backup, that’s where our off-site copies come in.  The first off-site copy is usually stored in the same city or a nearby city, allowing for very fast retrieval of your data on an external drive.  We also keep a second off-site copy of your data in a distant city to protect against regional disasters that might destroy our facilities.


Because your fist layer of backup is local, most restores are near instant.  Your internet connection speed doesn’t come in to play, nor does whether that connection is up or down.  If your place of business is destroyed, then the first off-site copy of your data being stored close to your business allows us to provide you with your data on an external drive very quickly.


Wilson IT’s Managed Backup Service takes privacy and security seriously and has designed a system with security and privacy built in at every layer.

It starts with the initial backup of each computer.  Data is encrypted locally on each computer using a key that you can choose and can make unique for each computer and can make as long as you want.  Because of this, even the local copy of your backup data is protected and cannot be read by anyone who might physically steal the backup data.

Your pre-encrypted local backups are copied to our off-site locations using encrypted tunnels and are stored on storage devices using full disk encryption.  Even a full compromise of our company including every key and password for our equipment cannot result in a compromise of your company’s data because we only have encrypted data that was encrypted before it was sent to us and we don’t have a copy of your key anywhere on our systems.

At Wilson IT, we believe that we’ve created an amazing managed backup service for a very affordable price.  If your business has data, then it needs to be backed up, and backed up well.

To learn more about our managed backup service, CLICK HERE.