How much is your customer data worth? And how much should you pay to protect it?

Modern businesses rely on data for every aspect of their operation. How you protect this data on a daily basis helps to define the operational integrity and success of your business. Along with intellectual property, financial data, and employee records, customer data demands special attention. While there is a cost associated with professional backup and disaster recovery services, it is minimal compared to the extensive losses associated with many data loss scenarios.

The real business value of customer data

The value of data is well-known, with an entire field of study called infonomics concerned with the economic value of information. However, despite the ability of data to transform every aspect of business, according to Gartner analyst Doug Laney, many companies manage their “office furniture with greater discipline than [their] information assets.”

According to Gartner, information has three foundational measures:

  1. Intrinsic value – How correct is your data?
  2. Business value – How relevant is your data?
  3. Performance value – How hard does your data work?

Customer data is particularly sensitive due to its high value across all three measures. The people who trust you with their data are largely responsible for your success, with data integrity offering a range of immediate and follow-through benefits. In order to measure the real cost of data backup and recovery services, it’s important to weigh up the direct costs with the following potential impacts of data loss.

Recovery Costs

There are a range of immediate and ongoing recovery costs associated with any data loss scenario. Lacking or incomplete backup solutions may cause data loss, with each accident or security incident needing to be analysed, corrected, and secured to ensure it doesn’t happen again. As you might expect, this can be an expensive exercise, with a single security incident enough to cause substantial damage to your balance sheet.

Loss of business continuity

In order to define the value of your customer data, it’s important to understand the opportunity costs associated with data loss. Whether it’s due to data theft, natural disaster, or human error, lost or compromised data has a range of potential impacts that threaten your ongoing productivity. Along with the immediate and direct costs associated with recovery, data loss is likely to compromise the continuity of your business operations.

Non-Compliance

Compliance is a serious issue for any business, especially when you’re dealing with private customer records. Depending on your industry sector and jurisdiction, non-compliance may have significant financial and legal implications. Professional third-party backup services allow you to meet stringent compliance obligations, including service-level agreements, reporting, and record-keeping. Non-compliance often comes with substantial fines, with prevention always better than cure.

Reputation damage

Integrated data backup solutions help you to avoid data loss and enable immediate recovery should a security event occur. Along with the immediate costs associated with recovery and non-compliance, and the long-term damage of lost business continuity, there are more indirect costs associated with reputation damage. A single security incident can threaten the hard-earned reputation of any business, with preemptive data backup and recovery measures needed to ensure a strong and enduring reputation.

Complete data backup and recovery solutions for Microsoft 365

From limited to substantial, from immediate to long-lasting, there are a number of real costs associated with data loss events. In order to secure your business and get it ready for the future, it’s important to look after your valuable data assets. Specialised third-party solutions are required for any business, especially those that rely on cloud-based software services such as Microsoft 365.


If you’re ready to take responsibility for your data, please download our white paper, Best Practices for Backing Up Microsoft 365

Compliance considerations for using (and deploying) Microsoft365

While Microsoft 365 is an impressive platform, no SaaS provider is 100% secure. To ensure you meet your compliance requirements, you can’t rely on Microsoft 365’s security and backup features alone. This is even more critical if your teams are working remotely, which is becoming now the norm for Australian businesses.  

So how do you ensure that your data stays secure? Here are five key steps you can take to deploy Microsoft 365 across your remote workforce safely and meet your compliance obligations. 

1. Remember data sovereignty

Microsoft 365 provides the platform infrastructure, but it’s your responsibility to store your data in line with Australian law.  

You must comply with Australian data sovereignty. In other words, you need to store Australian data within Australia’s boundaries, even if your teams work remotely. 

How do you do this? By partnering with a provider like Global Storage who understands your compliance requirements and only ever stores Australian data on domestic servers. 

2. Identify gaps in your backup processes

Yes, Microsoft 365 offers some backup facilities, but they’re incomplete. 

Microsoft 365 only protects the hardware and the operating system, not user accounts and data. So if there’s a ransomware attack and you lose data, it’s permanently lost unless you back it up. 

What does this mean for your remote workforce? Well, whether you’re talking on Teams or emailing through Outlook, you need to back up your data and store it safely. 

Otherwise, important correspondence could be gone forever. 

3. Retain necessary data

There’s no doubt that it’s an end user’s responsibility to back up some data, but with business-critical information, it’s your responsibility to ensure it’s recoverable. Otherwise, you’ll fall short of your compliance obligations. 

And remember, Microsoft Exchange Online only stores data for a maximum of 30 days. You need your own third-party backup tools to archive this data for longer. 

The good news is that partnering with a managed services provider like Global Storage means you don’t need to deploy your own backup tools. They have scalable, agile solutions you can roll out across every user device and account, no matter where they are.  

4. Train your end users

When creating a remote workforce, you can’t underestimate the importance of end user training. 

If an end user doesn’t know how to spot phishing scams or fake login screens, they could unwittingly leak confidential data to malicious actors. Every end user has a part to play in keeping your virtual Microsoft 365 environment secure, so be sure they’re armed with the information they need. 

5. Promote a security culture

All this adds up to creating a culture of security across your organisation. Encourage end users to take security seriously and ensure they know who to contact if they have any concerns. At the very least, ensure that:

  • End devices are protected with up-to-date security patches.
  • Users know how to create strong passwords. 
  • You use multi-factor authentication, where possible.
  • Users log on through secure VPNs, even if they’re on private networks.

Deploy Microsoft 365 safely with Global Storage

Australian businesses are among those most likely to be targeted by cybercriminals, which means you must take every available step to secure your data. The bottom line: Don’t make the mistake of relying solely on Microsoft 365’s built-in features — these aren’t enough to comply with Australian security requirements.

So, trust your Microsoft 365 data backup needs to Global Storage. 

Office 365 Cloud Backup As a Service: Introducing DataReady

Have you been considering transitioning to Microsoft Office 365? Many businesses are transitioning to cloud, but whether this is a partial or full transition, businesses should be asking; is my cloud data properly protected?

Microsoft O365 protects from data loss using retention policies. These policies offer limited recovery capabilities and are not a long-term solution. Microsoft O365’s legal hold creates an archive copy of the data but not a backup, exposing the business and its data.

Exposure can come in the form of data that is corrupted, infected, accidentally or maliciously deleted.  Data is retained typically for a period of 30 – 90 days depending on the content (OneDrive, SharePoint, Mail, Teams). If businesses do not protect themselves for long-term backup and recovery strategies, they are at risk of data loss beyond the standard Microsoft offering.

Global Storage have recently launched a solution to this challenge, ensuring all critical business data is protected. Working under the existing Backup as a Service, Global Storage can now protect all Microsoft Office 365 data from data loss and offer simple recovery options.

DataReady O365 Backup Cloud Service is a managed service that provides backup and recoverability to your businesses data. Global Storage use market leading technologies to protect your data, ensuring it stays onshore in Australia in a geo-redundant data repository outside of the Microsoft tenancy.

Protection services are across Office 365 content, including Mail, Archive, SharePoint, Teams and OneDrive. Recover your lost data through a user portal managed by your IT Administrators or contact Global Storage for assisted recovery options.

Need more detail or technical information? Get in contact for a discussion with our team on your specific requirements.

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