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Special Olympics Upgrades to Cloud Backup for Advantages in Data Security, Compliance and Ease-of-Use
Asigra Inc., a leading cloud backup, recovery and restore software provider since 1986 today announced that charitable organization, Special Olympics Ireland, has selected Asigra Cloud Backup to replace its tape backup system. Having experienced data retention, recoverability and data security challenges that resulted in a lack of compliance with the Irish Data Protection Requirements, the Special Olympics decided to upgrade to Another 9's cloud backup service powered by Asigra.

Established in 1968, Special Olympics is dedicated to empowering children and adults with intellectual disabilities to develop physical fitness and demonstrate courage. The international nonprofit organisation provides opportunities for Special Olympians to participate in year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports with other Special Olympics athletes and the community. The organisation was challenged to continuously safeguard a large volume of donation and participant data in relation to its events and programs and worked with IT services provider, Another 9, to deploy cloud backup.

Tape backup had been the long-time primary data protection technology for the Irish branch of Special Olympics for several years. The group protected terabytes of data across physical and standalone VMware ESX virtual servers throughout six separate locations. The protected data included files but also included SQL, MySQL, and Exchange data. After years of using tape, several ongoing issues caused the organisation to question its reliability as a backup medium. The group began experiencing data retention issues and having trouble with timely data recovery. They were also spending too much time managing the tape environment. With its large volume of sensitive donation and participant data related to its events and programs, the organisation's IT team also needed to ensure that regulatory concerns related to Irish Data Protection Requirements were being addressed.

In response, the Irish Special Olympics worked with IT services provider, Another 9, to deploy a public cloud-based data recovery solution powered by Asigra. Founded in 2000 as a specialist disaster recovery provider, Dublin-based Another 9 offers its customers end-to-end secure computing infrastructure and data management services to reduce costs and achieve higher levels of operational up-time. With physical locations for data recovery that include the company's Business Recovery Operations (Hot-Site) Center and other facilities, backup technology from Another 9 and Asigra was situated to deliver much faster and more reliable services, without the excessive management requirements of tape.

"We were unhappy with slow, tape-based recovery, which was falling short on several fronts," said Niall Callahan, IT Manager, Special Olympics (Irish branch). "As a public charity-based organisation, we need our data to remain both securely stored and accessible over extended periods of time to meet compliance mandates. The only option that made sense was upgrading to public cloud backup which improved our local and remote recovery capabilities to meet operational objectives."

Asigra Cloud Backup software is the industry's leading cloud-based data recovery software with over one million installations worldwide. The software is built for efficient operation and easily integrates with public, private, and hybrid cloud architectures. Asigra's agentless software architecture provides for simple deployment and hands-free management while providing advanced features that include global de-duplication, automated mass deployment, autonomic healing, and validation restore capabilities.

"As a trusted advisor to the Irish branch of Special Olympics, we understand the organisation's needs to have data restored quickly and often," said Peter Fogarty, Senior Account Manager, Another 9. "By partnering with Asigra, Another 9 is able to address those concerns for Special Olympics and also ensure that the organisation meets the Irish Data Protection Requirements for database safety and security. Another 9's end-to-end, fully managed data backup and recovery services ensure both efficiency and security."

Since deploying the new solution, Special Olympics Ireland highlighted the top benefits achieved with the solution. The first benefit was automated backup and recovery, which increased overall efficiency by completely eliminating time-consuming and expensive processes related to tape management. Secondly, multi-site integrated backup reduced the need for multi-location management. Third is the increased security of its large volume of confidential donation and participant data supported compliance initiatives. Finally, greatly improved data recovery performance dropped recovery time from days to hours since the upgrade from tape. From a cash flow perspective, the organisation quantifies the resulting savings to be at least €1,500 per month because of the reduction in hardware, software and management costs.

"Reducing the complexity of backup infrastructure can have a positive impact on overall IT operations by allowing the reallocation of precious IT resources," said Tracy Staniland, VP, Corporate Marketing, Asigra. "The Special Olympics is a use case for more effective, secure and efficient backup since modernising with Another 9 and Asigra."
Published Wednesday, April 30, 2014 6:53 AM by David Marshall
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