Storing and managing massive amounts of data – such as email or electronic records – has become a huge challenge for organizations. Not only does the information need to be easily retrievable, but data retention policies often require you to archive it for a number of years.
The cloud is a great environment for archiving since it’s instantly scalable, cost-effective, and virtually maintenance-free. Here are six smart reasons to move your archiving from on-premise to the cloud:
1. Less Expensive and a Better ROI than On-Premise Archiving. Maintaining a private archive infrastructure is costly and IT management-intensive. Since archiving is inherently a long-term operation, multiple hardware refreshes will be required throughout the lifecycle of your data, support contracts need to be maintained, and your IT staff will spend a great deal of time managing the hardware, software, and archived information.
By contrast, cloud archiving offers many choices about how and where archives are hosted. The cloud doesn’t require you to purchase or maintain servers or the infrastructure to house and cool them. Your service provider will be able to provide the technology infrastructure for you, as well as offering different levels of services.
2. Quickly Add More Storage Without Purchasing Additional Hardware. Archived data, by its very nature, is always expanding. Depending on your company’s data retention requirements, you’ll need a storage mechanism that scales easily. The cloud is perfect since it accommodates an unlimited amount of storage without requiring the purchase of additional hardware. Just let your center service provider know that you need more space for your archives, and they can quickly update your infrastructure.
3. Fast Deployment. Since the cloud doesn’t require you to buy and configure hardware, your archiving system can be operational fast. That makes the barriers to entry very low for companies that want to test out cloud archiving and see how it works.
4. Easy to Find Specific Information – Fast. One of the biggest challenges with archiving is finding the information you need quickly without sifting through reams of data. Cloud-based archiving solutions have intelligent search functionality which makes this a simple task.
This search functionality is critical, for example, if your company is subpoenaed and given a short timeframe to produce all emails related to a particular subject. Reviewing multiple physical backup tapes is tedious and time-consuming and often requires an IT administrator’s expertise. With the cloud, archives can be searched in a matter of seconds by anyone with the appropriate credentials and a web browser.
5. Assists with Regulatory Compliance. Many companies, regardless of industry, need to satisfy requirements for regulatory mandates, like HIPAA or PCI-DSS, including adhering to specific data retention rules. If your company’s compliance is called into question, courts and lawyers may require you to quickly produce specific documents and emails. As mentioned previously, the cloud makes it easy to find that specific information.
6. Minimal Maintenance. One of the benefits of using cloud-based archiving is the maintenance your IT team will need to perform is minimal. Your data center service provider takes care of purchasing, configuring, refreshing, and managing the hardware. This frees up your team to work on more strategic technology projects. In addition, service providers offer physical and network security that individual organizations, short of building their own data centers, can not usually match.