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Cloud vs. Hybrid Backup

 Cloud Backup

In this technologically advanced and digital-driven era, a lot of business activities are based on digital platforms and devices. Businesses are collecting and producing large amounts of data, whether it's related to employee data, customer data, internal operational data, etc. All of these datasets are valuable assets for businesses and no one likes to lose them. However, data loss is an inevitable event that can occur at any time due to any data calamity, such as accidental deletion, system crash, cyberattacks, etc. As per reports, 44% of data loss is mainly caused due to accidental deletion, software corruption, or system crash. Owing to that, businesses are actively involved in data backup practices to keep a copy of the original data somewhere safe.

For years, local or onsite backup solutions have remained the preferred choice to make backups of important data. However, the trend is now shifting toward cloud backups. As per Statista research, 81% of the surveyed large and mid-sized organizations were using the cloud for storage or backup. In addition to cloud backup, hybrid backup is also emerging and becoming a popular choice to make backups. So, what exactly are cloud and hybrid backups, and which one seems a better choice for businesses in the upcoming years? Let's find out in this blog.

What is Cloud Backup

Cloud backup is a process in which the data and applications from business servers are backed up to the cloud (remote server) of the cloud service provider. In this process, businesses use the website or any dedicated software of the service provider to transfer/restore data and apps to the cloud servers via the internet.

Most services now even offer automated backup support in which the software automatically backs up the data at the set schedule, such as daily, weekly, or monthly. Google Cloud backup, OneDrive, IDrive, Backblaze, Carbonite Safe, and SpiderOak One are some of the leading cloud backup service providers.

Pros of Cloud Backup

  • It provides effective disaster recovery in case of on-site data calamity, such as a system crash, virus attack, data breach, natural disaster, etc.
  • It provides access to the data at anytime, anywhere due to online accessibility.
  • It does not require setting up an on-site data center, thereby saving significant costs.
  • It is easily scalable, as the business just has to subscribe to a higher storage plan.
  • It provides more data security, as the reputed providers offer top-notch cybersecurity.

Cons of Cloud Backup

  • It involves third-party servers to back up data, so it lacks total control of the data.
  • It is dependent on the internet, so requires high-speed internet to transfer, access, and restore data.
  • Not all providers can ensure required security compliance, so security and privacy are concerns, especially for less reputed cloud backup service providers.
  • It is difficult to shift from one cloud service provider to another.
  • It takes extra time to restore all the data and applications during a disaster recovery event if the backed-up size is large, thereby resulting in additional downtime.

What is Hybrid Backup

Since cloud backup has its pros and cons, businesses remained confused about whether they should opt for cloud or onsite backup solutions. Cloud backup provides more accessibility and scalability, while onsite backup provides faster restoration speed and more control of data. Owing to that, a new form of backup emerged called hybrid backup.

Hybrid backup provides the best of both worlds, i.e., it backs up data to both the cloud and on-premises. So, what happens in hybrid backup is that businesses make two backups of the data, one they store in the cloud servers and the other one they store in the on-site servers. This also helps businesses follow the "3-2-1" principle, which requires having 3 data copies located at two locations, so an original copy, on-site local backup, and off-site cloud backup fulfill the requirements.

Since on-site backup servers are costly to install, maintain, and scale, so most businesses that practice a hybrid backup model often just back up important or sensitive data and applications to their on-site servers and keep the backup of remaining data in the cloud. Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud, Alibaba Cloud, Oracle Cloud, and IBM Cloud are some of the reputed names for hybrid backup services.

Pros of Hybrid Backup

  • It provides dual backups, thereby providing an extra protection layer.
  • It provides faster restoration time during disaster recovery events, thereby reducing downtimes.
  • Sensitive data can be backed-up on-site in local servers instead of third-party off-site cloud servers.
  • Both the local and cloud backup works in a synchronous way, meaning that data is backed-up at the same time on both of them.

Cons of Hybrid Backup

  • It can turn out costly if full backups are made on both the cloud and on-site.
  • It is difficult to set up in the beginning.
  • It required a dedicated IT team to manage on-site backup servers.

Which is Best for Businesses – Cloud Backup vs. Hybrid Backup

Both cloud backup and hybrid backup can serve the backup needs effectively, so the question is how to select the best backup solutions for small business. In general speaking, there is no favorite between cloud or hybrid backup. Both these backup models are going to remain trending in 2023 and the upcoming years. So, it mainly depends on the business needs, its data volume, and overall budget.

If a business wants to save cost, needs a convenient way to back up, access, and restore data anytime, and prefers an offsite copy of data, then cloud backup seems a preferred choice. However, if a business wants to focus on improved security with faster restoration time and have the budget and team to handle on-site backups, then the hybrid backup is a much-recommended choice. To sum up, look at your business needs and then decide which backup model serves your requirements effectively.

Want a recommendation on a suitable backup solution? Contact CARE Team for a discussion now!