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Data Protection Challenges and Benefits in the Cloud

Switching to cloud-based infrastructure changes many aspects of your data center operations. When it comes to data protection, the cloud brings some challenges and also offers some potential solutions.

Data Protection Challenges of the Cloud

There are two major data protection challenges related to using the cloud.

The first is the security aspect of protecting data against unauthorized access and tampering. Unless you build a private cloud housed in your data center, the cloud is an off-site environment where resources are shared by other tenants. Although cloud vendors oversee physical security and certain other aspects of security, companies retain the responsibility for access controls and protecting their data. Federated identity management allows the same access controls to be applied in the cloud as locally, and encrypting data both at rest and at transit protects data from unauthorized access.

The second challenge is how to integrate backup and recovery management of data in the cloud with that of data in the data center. Using separate tools in each environment means there's no comprehensive view of where data is stored and makes it challenging to apply policies consistently across environments. In addition, conventional approaches to backup and recovery are tied to physical, but cloud environments are much more fluid and changeable. Even a virtual machine perspective may not offer adequate protection in a cloud environment where VMs are dynamically created and shut down. The backup and recovery perspective needs to change from a host-based view to a fully data-centric view.

Data Protection Advantages of the Cloud

Those challenges are real, but there are also real data protection advantages of using cloud. The biggest advantage, of course, is that cloud offers built-in resiliency along with an unmatched level of flexibility. All data and operations in the cloud benefit from the cloud provider's security and availability features.

With backup in the cloud, you can easily manage storage tiers and use low-cost storage options for data that doesn't need accessibility. The cloud is also an effective storage location for data that needs high availability; Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) automates the process of backing up to and recovering from data in the cloud, increasing reliability while speeding up the process.

Conduct A Thorough Assessment to Determine Cloud's Role

Making sure you meet the challenges cloud creates for data protection best starts with an assessment of your needs. There are many options for cloud, including public, private, and hybrid designs, and the key to protecting your data is matching the data to the appropriate cloud architecture.

Look for backup and data protection tools that work across all your environments to ensure a consistent approach to backup operations and monitoring. Veritas NetBackup crosses platforms to backup data wherever it resides, ensuring protection.

dcVAST's team brings expertise and an unbiased eye to evaluating your data protection needs and assess how cloud affects your data protection strategy. Contact us to learn more about how you can overcome data protection challenges in the cloud.