Preventing Data Loss in Business Data Migration
Every year, businesses spend billions of dollars to migrate data between applications. Unfortunately, many businesses falter, particularly when it comes to protecting data. So: data loss prevention – is crucial for business continuity.
The issue is how companies view the process. Emphasis is placed on the investment in the new application while the data migration process is viewed as a necessary evil, and not necessarily a priority. This leads to an oversimplified approach to data loss prevention that’s often underfunded and unaware of the many challenges that can face data migration.
Instead, businesses need to take a more proactive approach to data migration that includes managing the migration in such a way that mitigates the risk of delays, budget overspending, and data loss.
Data Migration Strategies
Companies planning a data migration, first need to consider the migration style that best suits their needs. There are multiple strategies available depending on the size of the project, and the requirements, but the two most common migration types are: big bang migrations and trickle migrations.
Big Bang Migrations
Big bang migrations complete the entire migration in one go. Using a short, defined processing window, the entire system is shut down while the data is extracted from the source, processed, and loaded into the new environment.
This all-in-one approach is attractive because it ensures the migration occurs quickly and efficiently. However, it’s not without risk. In particular, the downtime required for this type of migration can be expensive in terms of lost work productivity. It’s also risky because it places intense pressure on IT to get everything done at once. Most often, this requires a dry run of the migration, so IT can create a contingency plan in case the attempt fails.
The other problem with big bang migrations is that you risk the quality of the data being compromised if the migration doesn’t go as planned. If a data recovery software isn’t in place, and the migration stalls or takes two weeks, instead of an extended weekend, your business data could be jeopardized, lost … without an ability to restore from any point in time.
The more common data migration approach is a trickle migration. Under this strategy, your IT team would incrementally migrate the data during a specific time window. To do this effectively, during the migration process you have to run both the old and new system in parallel.
The good news is that this method involves zero downtime and can be implemented in real time. This means that you can maintain all your data, including passing on future changes to the new system.
However, that doesn’t mean the trickle approach is without challenges. It adds complexity to the migration process because you must be able to track the data as it’s migrated. This means that you’ll need highly evolved data loss prevention solutions in place to keep track of where information is currently situated and to ensure that any changes to the data are recorded properly.
Also, any changes to data in the source system must trigger remigration to the new application. And if changes are made to data in both systems, synchronizing can become increasingly complex.
The Key to Successful Data Migration
Whether you choose big bang migration or trickle migration, the key to successful data migration is to give it the attention it deserves. To do this, you need to understand the complexity of the data migration process and perform significant planning along with validating and testing your data throughout.
If you want your data migration to stay within budget, not exceed your time limits, and avoid data loss, there are a few things you need to do before you get started.
- Understand Your Data: How complex is your data, where does it reside, how is it stored, and what will it need to get to its new destination? A comprehensive audit of all data sources should be completed to eliminate unexpected complications during the migration.
- Set Data Standards: Create a comprehensive set of data standards that will allow you to identify problem areas early. New data standards will also help you develop, define, and recommend definitions to support data consolidation.
- Develop Data Governance Roles: Who will manage your data and support data quality, usage, and access? These roles are accountable for the entire data migration process and need to be clearly defined.
- Assess Data Quality: Before any data is migrated, data should be checked for quality. This means making sure all data has been restructured, standardized, enriched, un-duplicated, and reconciled.
- Analyze Migration Risk: It’s critical to analyze how and where your organization’s data will be used and how it could be changed to mitigate risks.
- Identify the Proper Data Loss Prevention Tool: Data loss is unavoidable during data migration, but the right backup solution and data recovery software can help you restore lost data and keep you protected.
Utilization of Data Recovery Software for Business Data Loss Prevention
No matter the reason for your business data migration, the goal should be to improve your performance and gain a competitive advantage. The key is to have the appropriate data loss prevention tools in place to help you validate the migrated data and ensure that, as you move it from one system to another, nothing is lost. When looking for the right data recovery software for your business, you’ll want to consider if it is:
- Highly scalable
- Usable with minimal technical expertise
- Intuitive, so business and technical staff can work together
- Protective of data degradation due to errors, incompleteness, or duplication
- Inclusive of a data firewall that maintains the integrity and value of the data
- Able to regularly track and publish data quality metrics to monitor the progress of the migration
Data Recovery Software and Data Loss Prevention Tools
The correct choice of data loss prevention technology will go a long way in promoting a successful data migration outcome. There are a range of data recovery tools and software that can help you successfully accomplish a data migration, while protecting your data integrity. The key is to choose a data loss prevention solution that supports the entire migration lifecycle.
That’s where CloudAlly’s cloud-to-cloud data backup and restore services are invaluable.
CloudAlly — A Data Loss Prevention Tool
CloudAlly is a data recovery “tool”, or rather solution which is a 3rd party backup for G Suite, Office365, SharePoint Online, Box, Dropbox, and Salesforce. It offers both a daily backup and point-in-time recovery process that means your data is completely protected in case of migration failure. It can handle complex business rules for data backup post migration, while providing data quality assurance without specialist training or coding, as the IT admin uses one dashboard for many backup & restore capabilities.
As a third-party solution, CloudAlly simplifies the data migration process by making it easy to export chunks of data from various SaaS applications and platforms all at once, without requiring your team to go into each platform separately. This means that even if the application somehow mishandles or corrupts the data during migration due to improper configuration, your data is still protected.
By having all of your data backed-up and secured in a cloud-to-cloud data loss prevention solution such as CloudAlly, you’ll ease the migration process and mitigate risks. With CloudAlly, you can non-destructively recover lost or corrupt data, export data in a compatible format, and even drill down through each backup to locate specific information.
Your goal should be to implement a single technology that can manage your data migration and ensure data loss prevention, and that’s what CloudAlly does, start backing up G Suite and or Office 365.