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Asigra 2014 Predictions: Businesses to Increase Use of Cloud-Based Applications in 2014

VMblog 2014 Prediction Series

Virtualization and Cloud executives share their predictions for 2014.  Read them in this VMblog.com series exclusive.

Contributed article by Eran Farajun, Executive Vice President, Asigra

Businesses to Increase Use of Cloud-Based Applications in 2014

One of the major trends forecast for 2014 will be the movement toward cloud-based applications such as Google Apps, Microsoft 365 and others. According to Google, more than 5 million businesses now use Google Apps and this figure has been predicted by analysts to grow dramatically over the next several years. Those businesses switching to cloud-based applications are benefitting from the technology because of its lower up-front cost and easier management/licensing compared to on-premise applications. Unlike local application data, however, data is stored remotely which requires a different approach to data backup and recovery.

For those organizations either using or planning to use cloud based applications in 2014, ensuring that a cloud application backup and recovery strategy is in place to prevent a  data loss event  is a key concern. It is not the application provider's role to ensure data recovery. The cloud user is responsible for recovering lost data in the event that the cloud application provider has downtime issues or loses user data at some level. Therefore, cloud application users should select a data recovery solution that has the ability to protect the data stored in these environments.

According to a 2013 Aberdeen Group survey of IT professionals, "IT Business Preparedness: A Combination of Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery," found that 51% of the respondents use or have plans to use Cloud/Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) in support of their business continuity and disaster recovery programs. Organizations often rely on SaaS vendors to back up their information which is a very risky practice. Companies need to protect their own mission critical files in these environments by using technology geared toward SaaS data.

Tom Austin, Senior Analyst for Gartner stated in a report on this subject that, "A major acceleration toward cloud office systems (including email) will begin by 1H15, with "early majority" adopters migrating in earnest and "late majority" adopters beginning this move by 2017... There were 50 million business people provisioned in whole or part with office systems capabilities from the cloud at the start of 2013. Those 50 million are only 8% of the overall universe of office system users. The number of cloud-provisioned users will grow 28.5% a year to 695 million users by 2022 (and constitute 60% of the larger user universe that will exist by then)."

Organizations using cloud-based applications for business operations are enjoying the benefits that a move to SaaS-based applications will provide. However, even as companies transfer their capital expenditure and IT management tasks to these new environments, they are ultimately responsible for the data stored in these environments.

Though many established service providers such as Google perform their own backups to ensure that user data is kept available at all times, they are not responsible for helping customers retrieve deleted, edited, or corrupted information. Ultimately, it is the responsibility of the user to ensure the recovery of their data. For this reason, IT professionals responsible for safeguarding corporate data should consider data recovery solutions that incorporate cloud-based application data into their backup infrastructure.

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About the Author

Eran Farajun is the executive vice president for Asigra, a trusted cloud backup and recovery software provider since 1986.
Published Friday, January 10, 2014 6:25 AM by David Marshall
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