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The Importance of Regional Data Centers for Office 365 Backup

When it comes to Office 365 backup, there’s a lot of confusion about what’s appropriate for each small and medium-sized business.  Some people think that nothing else is needed, but Microsoft’s cloud backup comes with an unwanted element of risk.

Office 365 doesn’t offer daily backup and recovery services that make it easy to restore data removed from the recycle bin, nor is it prepared for unexpected malicious activity and data corruption caused by a 3rd party. That’s why additional cloud backup software services are so vital. But they’re not all created equal.

Many cloud backup companies offer a single data center and expect that to be enough, but it’s not. Cloud location matters. That’s why CloudAlly offers regional AWS (Amazon Web Services) data centers in the US, EU, and Australia.

Using regional data centers expands the reach of CloudAlly’s backup and recovery solutions to provide data backup while complying with the relevant laws across countries. Organizations have a legal and ethical obligation to protect and store their data according to the specifications of their region, and it’s only through regional cloud-based data storage that this is possible.

Why Regional Data Centers Matter

For European customers, CloudAlly’s EU data center makes it possible for businesses to comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that was recently adopted by the EU. In addition to satisfying the required data sovereignty concerns, the regional data center in Europe also decreases the latency times and increases efficiency for backing up, restoring, and exporting data for EU customers.

Office 365 Backup
As for U.S. customers with operations abroad, regional data backup and recovery centers in the EU and Australian provide the ability to comply with data requirements in other gee-regions. And for our Australian clients, our regional AWS data center complies with the Australian Privacy Policies (APPs) enforced by the Privacy Act.

So, why does location matter when it comes to Office 365 backup? Regional backups offer a few distinct competitive advantages.

1. Protection

Cloud backup failure and outages are rare, but they can and do happen. That’s why regional backup centers are so necessary. It’s also important and considered best practice to isolate you backups from the original source data. CloudAlly’s use of AWS data centers ensures that your backup data is still available even if there is a temporary service disruption in Microsoft Azure.
So, how is this different than other backup services? Let’s say you’re using a backup provider that stores data on Microsoft Azure. If Azure is unavailable for any reason, your company will lose access to both your backups and Office 365. With CloudAlly, even in the event of an Azure service disruption, you can still export your previous day’s backup in Outlook compatible .pst format and continue working locally until the Azure service is restored.

2. Latency

Response times for the end user are very important for Office 365 backup as well as cloud application use. In fact, response times have the most significant impact on user satisfaction. That’s why having regional data centers close to your users is important. The longer the distance your data has to travel, the greater potential for latency.

According to Verizon Enterprise, in North America the average network latency is about 40ms. However, trans-Atlantic latency between the U.S. and Europe is about 80ms almost double. That means if you’re a European company or an American business with most of its customers in Europe, they’ll experience twice the delay compared to their American counterparts.

CloudAlly is one of the few services to provide data center options in all major geo-regions including North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific, making the service available to partners and clients around the world. Having these regional data centers also improves latency in another way, through a balanced workload.

The balanced workload model means that no one server is over-provisioned and that each regional data center is capable of handling the workload of another data center in the event an emergency should occur. This balance ensures that no one system is ever over-taxed or at risk of failure, which means you won’t need to worry about lag times or down times like you would with a cloud backup service with only a single data center.

3. Privacy

Regional data centers are becoming more and more important for global cloud growth, especially as surveillance controversies have increased the focus on data sovereignty and customer privacy. As more countries seek to keep their citizens’ data within their borders, cloud backup providers are discovering that single-location data centers do not suffice.

Different types of data have different locality requirements. At CloudAlly, we understand that multi-nationals sometimes have multiple Office 365 tenants for operations and/or subsidiaries in other geo-regions. Data privacy regulations require that data remain in its original geo-region, so with our data centers located in the US, EU, and Australia we help you ensure that you’re covered no matter where you’re located.

In addition, local data centers keep your data better protected from hijackers and keep it out from under the jurisdiction of countries that have nothing to do with your business or your customers. “Information flow through the Internet often involves transmission through many countries, traveling the path of least congestion,” describers Data Center Knowledge. “Any of these countries through which your data passes can claim jurisdiction—including countries where your traffic path may have been hijacked through hackers.”

There are also binding agreements between countries, which allows one country’s agents to require the assistance of another country to obtain information through mutual legal assistance treaties (MLAT). By keeping your data within your region, you minimize the risk of having to reveal private and secure data.

And CloudAlly adheres to the highest standards when it comes to privacy and data security. Our Office 365 Backup services comply with stringent EU privacy directives, plus we routinely conduct security audits and assessments to confirm that we continually meet those directives. In addition, all of our regional data centers have all necessary certifications (ISO 27001 and HIPPA) and undergo regular compliance audits for your protection.

Choosing CloudAlly Office 365 Backup

And when you choose CloudAlly’s Office 365 backup, you’re choosing a service that is compatible with more than one application. CloudAlly works with Gmail backup, SharePoint backup, OneDrive backup, and more. And all it takes are a few simple clicks to activate your backups for your entire company or a few selected users.

You can learn more about CloudAlly’s backup services by setting up a free trial or contact us today +1.917.338.0385.

Google Vault Backup Vs CloudAlly Amazon AWS Backup

Google Vault Backup

Being a readily available add-on for Google Apps, Google Vault could be a potentially good data protection and backup alternative. Google Vault Backup is necessary in any constellation.

But, does it provide a complete data protection solution with backup or recovery from any point?

And, how does it measure up against CloudAlly, which is a leading provider of cloud-to-cloud backup and recovery services?

In this article, we take a look at the features offered by Google Vault and CloudAlly, along with their pros and cons.

The objective is to do a direct comparison of these services to understand which one is more suitable for the protection of Google Apps data.

Things to Look for in a Google Apps Data Protection Plan

To be able to compare CloudAlly and Google Vault, we first need to understand what should be considered when selecting a suitable data protection service or tool.

First of all, the service should be able to search the data and export any data that is required on site.

It should also be possible to restore individual items and to restore complete user accounts from any point in time.

Now, let us check out the details of the two popular backup services for Google Apps.

Google Vault Backup

Google Vault is a powerful add-on provided by Google that allows your enterprise to retain, search, store and export emails or chat messages for quick discovery and compliance requirements.

It collects all email correspondence that comes into and goes out of your company. It thus empowers your administrators to locate or search for any email item, whenever required.

For messages, it is possible to place a “hold” at the company level or account level.

For this purpose, your company administrators need to specify the keyword and date for the messages to be included under the “hold”.

The advantage of this is that you can retain the data until the “hold” period expires or until it is removed by the administrators.

While the “hold” is active, the end user cannot change or even delete the data covered under the “hold”. This type of “hold” is pretty useful for lawyers for litigation purposes.

How to Access the Vault Data?

Your company administrator needs to carry out a search to spot particular data items and export them. Once they are exported, the items can be downloaded in a compressed file to use with any email program or even text editor. 

Limitations

Google Vault Backup may be able to search your data or files on Google Drive, but it cannot retain them. So, if any of the Google Drive files is deleted accidentally, it will not be able to help you recover them.

In fact, it cannot offer a point-in-time recovery for any of the popular Google Apps, such as Calendars, Contacts, and Drive.

As mentioned earlier, the Vault can hold data at the account level, but the Vault data cannot be restored directly back to the account of the end user.

If any user (account) of Google Apps is deleted, all the corresponding data will be removed along with the removal of Vault. This is because the Vault repository is maintained within the Gmail account of a user.

Summary

It is important to note that Google Vault was only designed for e-discovery and compliance. It can thus only retrieve individual emails or chat messages and does not offer full-fledged backup and recovery functionality for all Google Apps.

You can avail this service at $5 per month ($60 per year) for each Vault user.

CloudAlly Secure Amazon AWS Backup

CloudAlly is a comprehensive backup and recovery service for all Google Apps data. It is a highly reliable, cloud-based data backup service.

Along with Google Apps, it also offers automated daily backups of Office 365, SharePoint/OneDrive for Business, Salesforce, Box for Business and more to an unlimited Amazon secure storage.

Your organization’s administrator can activate the backups for all Google Apps users (falling under one domain) or individual users with a single click.

Also, in the case of any data loss, restoration and data export is possible with a single click. You are thus able to quickly recover your Google Apps data from any point in time.

Backup

With CloudAlly, there is no limitation to the storage and it offers unlimited retention of daily archives. This allows for backups on a daily basis and helps to considerably reduce the on-premises storage requirements.

If that was not enough, CloudAlly also empowers you to control all your backups from a single management console.

This clearly saves a lot of time by getting rid of the admin processes that require too much manual effort.

With regard to the backups taken using CloudAlly, they continue to be available to you, even after any Google Apps user (account) is deleted.

They only cease to exist when the administrator removes them. It is, therefore, possible for your company to archive user backups for an indefinite amount of time by using the “backup pause” feature of CloudAlly.

Restore

When the need arises to restore any data at an individual item level or at any higher level (folder, mailbox and more), you can simply search your CloudAlly backups.

The restored data is generally stored with a date and time stamp in a sub-folder named “CloudAlly Restore”.

Unlike Google Vault, it is possible to restore the data directly to the user’s account. In fact, you can even restore it back to a different user account, if there is such a requirement.

Export

CloudAlly enables you to export data (which has been backed up) in various formats, including .vcf, .eml. Data can also be exported in .pst format, which is compatible with the commonly used email platform in enterprises, namely Outlook.

Data Security and Compliance

You can be sure about the adherence to data security and customer confidentiality best practices, as CloudAlly is Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliant and ISO 27001 certified.

CloudAlly takes care of data security laws to such an extent that you are given the choice to opt for servers based in the U.S. (by default), EU or Australia.

Summary

With the most comprehensive backup and recovery features on offer, CloudAlly proves itself to be a leading provider of cloud-to-cloud backup and recovery services.

It is ideal for the protection of your Google Apps data with Gmail, Calendars, Tasks, Contacts, Chat and Google Drive!

You can avail the CloudAlly services at $3 per month ($30 per year) for every Google Apps user. What is more, you can even explore their services on a free trial basis for around 15 days.

If you have a non-profit or academic organization, you will even get special discounts from CloudAlly.

We hope that the above comparison of Google Vault Backup and CloudAlly enables you to make an informed decision when selecting your ideal Google Apps data protection tool.

How to recover your G Suite?

How to recover your Gmail/Google Apps drive, contacts and calendar.

We will explain how to recover lost online data in your Drive, lost contacts and deleted calendar events. Let’s get to it!


What this article is about:


First ask yourself: When did you delete it? If it hasn’t been that long (no more than 30 days) follow the next instructions.

How To Recover Gmail Contacts

Google has a built-in system that saves older versions of contacts for some time to help recover any contact data that is lost accidentally. Here is how you can use this feature to recover your Google contacts.

  • Step 1: Click on “Gmail” in the top left corner of the window, then select “Contacts” in the drop down menu that appears.
  • Step 2: On the Google Contacts page, click on the “More” button on the top left part of the screen, and select “Restore Contacts” from the dropdown menu.

Your recently deleted contact data should be restored under a new group with the current date as the title. However, Google deletes Contacts’ data as well after 30 days, so make sure you recover contacts sooner, rather than later.

How To Recover a Deleted Calendar Event

If you accidentally delete an event, you may not be able to recover all your details, but can retrieve some information through an XML feed.

  • Step 1: Click on the Undo option right on top that appears as soon as you delete an event. It stays there for a few moments so you need to be quick about it, otherwise, you’ll have to recreate the calendar event.
  • Step 2: If you missed undo link, look for any invitations you might have sent for that event in your Gmail’s Sent folder.

If you can’t find any invitation, you’ll have to recover the data the hard way. If you’re not well versed with Google Apps or aren’t an apps administrator, it would be better to simply recreate the event.

How To Find Calendar’s Public XML Feed

  • Step 1: Change your domain’s calendar sharing settings in the Google Admin console to Share all information, and outsiders cannot modify calendars.
  • Step 2: In the list on the left, click on the drop down option of your calendar, and select calendar settings.
  • Step 3: Scroll down until you see Private Address column with two sections, XML, and ICAL. Click on XML.
  • Step 4: You should see a popup with a URL on it. Click it.
  • Step 5: Once clicked, add the string “?showdeleted=true&showhidden=true” to the end of URL in your browser’s address bar. You should see an XML feed with all the event details in your calendar, including the ones you just deleted.

You can see limited information about your events such as a brief description and the event title, but the invited guests’ information isn’t recoverable though.

How To Recover Deleted Files from Google Drive

The usual way to do it:

  • Step 1: Go to your Google Drive and click on the Trash option on the left.
  • Step 2:  Once there, select the file you want to recover and click the “Restore” button.
  • Step 3: In case you can’t find the files there, go to the Google Admin console and navigate to the users section.
  • Step 4: Find the user in the list, and then go to their account page. Once there, click on the three vertical dots on the top left corner, then select “Restore Data” in the drop down menu.
  • Step 5: Select the date range for when you deleted the files, and check the box for Google Drive files, then click Restore. That should do it.

The other complementary ways:

  • If you are a Google apps user, ask your admin to recover your data. Google Apps admins can recover data from the prior 25 days.
  • If you took all the actions above and still can’t find that lost Google App data (Drive, Contacts, Calendar)  you were looking for, then you must have deleted it over a month ago, and therefore you can’t recover it, since Google automatically erases it after 30 days.
  • If you are using CloudAlly, then you can easily recover your deleted data, even though it was permanently erased by Google.

Recover your deleted email with CloudAlly

  • a. Log in to your account in CloudAlly dashboard
  • b. Go to the Google account you would like to restore and click on it
  • c. Search for the data type (email/drive/calendar/contacts)  and date you want to recover
  • d. Click on restore/export
  • c. Get your recovered data to your account or desktop

It’s really simple and easy to restore lost online with CloudAlly automated backups for Google Apps. Next time, if you are using CloudAlly, you can skip all those steps, log in to CloudAlly and recover your lost data. As simple as a click. Read more on “How to backup Google Apps”. Otherwise, you’re welcome to sign up for a free trial at and test it!


Now that you know more about how to recover your GSuite, you might want to have a look at what we created for you…

L20-Get-Our-Quick-Guide-To-G-Suite-Backup-squared

How to recover Gmail/Google Apps?

Lost and found part 1: How to recover your Gmail/Google Apps email?

You have thousands of emails in your Gmail inbox, which you deleted because you didn’t want to bother sorting through them all. Sounds familiar? I’m sure it does. We get so many emails each day, sometimes it’s hard to keep up with it, so we simply erase what we think we don’t need. So lets discuss: how to recover your Gmail/Google Apps email?

One day, you are looking for an important email and you just can’t find it. Suddenly, you realize that you probably deleted it, and end up scratching your head with panic, wondering how you can recover that data!

So – don’t panic we’re here to explain how you can recover your lost emails.

First is first: Ask your self, when did you delete it? if it hasn’t been that long (no more than 30 days) follow the next steps:

Step 1: Type in the keyword, preferably a long-tail one, related to your email in the search box.

In order to find and recover lost emails, you need to know some relevant keywords related to those emails, as with the dates they were sent or received. This will help narrow down the search.

Step 2: If you don’t find the email you’re looking for, scroll down to the bottom and look for the deleted message link.

Step 3: Click on “View It” and it will show you all the messages related to your keyword in the trash

Step 4: If you’ve found the email you were looking for, make sure you move it to the inbox as Google automatically empties the trash folder, after 30 days.

All you need to do is click on the check box for the email, and then click the “Move to Inbox” button. You can also go directly to the Trash folder to search for and move emails to the inbox.

Step 5: If you still didn’t find what you’re looking for, click on the spam folder on the left-hand side of Gmail and search with the same keyword in that folder.

Step 6: If you find the email you were searching for, make sure you click on the corresponding checkbox and mark it “Not Spam” to move it back to the inbox.

Step 7: If you still can’t find the email, try looking through your custom labels, if you’ve created any. If you still can’t find it, chances are, your email was deleted by Google permanently.

If you are a Google apps user, ask your admin to recover your data. Google Apps admins can recover data from the prior 25 days.

If you took all the actions above and still can’t find that email you were looking for, then you must have deleted your email over a month ago, and them you can’t recover it, since Google automatically erases it after 30 days.

If you are using CloudAlly, then you can easily recover your deleted email, even though it was permanently erased by Google:

step 8: Recover your deleted email with CloudAlly

a. Log in to your account in CloudAlly dashboard

b. Go to the Google account you would like to restore and click on it

c. Search for the email/date you want to recover

d. Click on restore/export

c. Get your recovered email to your inbox or desktop

It’s really simple and easy to restore lost emails with CloudAlly automated backups for Google Apps. Next time, if you are using CloudAlly, you can skip all those steps, log in to CloudAlly and recover your lost data. As simple as a click.

Read more on “How to backup Google Apps” Here.

Read the second part of  how to recover Google Apps: Deleted Contacts, Calendar and Google Drive!

3 Reasons You Should Add Cloud-to-Cloud Backup Service To Your Portfolio

Backup Services for Office 365

Every business wants to satisfy its clients and win more customers. But the question is how? For most, quality service is necessary. But is that everything that can be offered? The competition is tough and you have to stay ahead. So, the key to success is to know your competition, use the findings to your competitive advantage, and offer rich value.  Backup services for office 365 are essential for your success.

You may be a reseller of Google Apps, Office 365, or Salesforce like your competitors, but have you ever thought of offering added -value services like cloud-to-cloud backup to your customers? If you hadn’t, you must be wondering now how it fits in. If you have, but didn’t add it yet, then you should have another thought about it. Let’s see how it can help you stay ahead of your competition:

Stand out from the crowd

The success lies not in what type of cloud services your company offers, but how the offering is unique as compared to others. It is very important that you have a Unique Selling Proposition that gives your customers enough reasons to come to you rather than look at the competition.  Any service becomes unique when it is bundled with unique products or services that prove to be valuable in the market and there is a need for it.

Cloud-to-cloud backup service is a good example of a unique offer that can work as a key differentiator between you and your competitors and make you stand out from the crowd. With a cloud-to-cloud backup service added to your list of services, you can be an “all in one place” service for your customers – for example, Google App/Salesforce/ Office 365 implementation/migration to management, support and 100% backup.

Whether it’s Google Apps, Office 365, or Salesforce,every product comes with a time-bound backup feature. You have the opportunity of adding a competitive edge to your company with offering automated secured daily backups like CloudAlly.  knowing the importance of backup to the business continuity of your customers will prove you are on top of your game, and will win you new customers.

Win Customer Trust

Winning customers’ trust is very important. If you offer a solution that appears to be a compelling one, but in fact it really isn’t, your credibility gets hurt and that leads to customer attrition. It’s not just losing one customer, but also losing the opportunity of referrals as well.

Let’s take the example of Google Apps. Google keeps any deleted data for only 30 days. Now, what if a customer deletes data accidentally and never realizes that it needs to be backed up within 30 days—what happens next? The data can never be recovered and Google can’t even help with that. Won’t your customer get frustrated in that case? However, if there is an active backup of that account, data can be recovered pretty quickly. This will not only help you win customer trust, but also establish your credibility in the market.

 Increase Revenue

Increase in revenue also depends on your higher transaction value strategy and understanding what related products or services your customers might be interested in. That means the more diversified your services are, the greater opportunity there is for sales. You can also offer cloud-to-cloud backup solution as a standalone service just by partnering with us, and you can offer value by strengthening customer data protection strategy, and increase your sales.

Another way out is the number of repeat transactions generated from the same customer. If you offer a backup solution additionally as a value-added service, your customers will be satisfied and that would help you to retain a customer for a longer period of time which of course also means increase of revenue.

If you are interested in making your business distinct from your competition by adding cloud-to-cloud backup service to your portfolio, read more about CloudAlly’s Partner Program .

You can also further read more about “Why Backup Online Data” and on “Why do we need to backup Office 365” or “Google Apps misconceptions”

How to Free Up Gmail Storage

We’ve received quite a few inquiries lately regarding using CloudAlly to free up Gmail storage as users approach their Google Apps for Business or Google Apps for Education Gmail limit of 25GB. In order to free up Gmail storage, your users will need to do some Gmail housekeeping to remove old emails, attachments, trash and spam.

Of course before anyone starts the clean-up process you should first take a complete backup of all users within your Google Apps domain to either local or cloud-based storage to ensure that users can recover any important messages that might be inadvertently deleted during the clean-up process. And that’s where CloudAlly comes in… Read more