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Are you Leaving Endpoints Exposed?

We all know the drill when it comes to data protection: make sure that you can failover servers and business-critical applications in the case of an outage, right? Well, in reality that’s only a fraction of the real picture.

Most businesses these days are either leaving data completely unprotected, or not sufficiently protected. Instead, this is what the data protection plan looks like for a typical SMB:

  • Servers, critical business applications: Disaster Recovery functionality is in place
  • Branch offices, remote workers, endpoints: EXPOSED
  • Cloud Applications (O365, Salesforce.com, G Suite, Box, Dropbox): EXPOSED

While we’ve taken into account servers and mission critical apps, there’s in fact a large portion of business data that isn’t sufficiently protected. There are many reasons for this; Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is one trend that presents challenges with endpoint backup and recovery. Cloud apps add yet another hurdle as they will generally have retention policies in place — say 30 days — but after that the data is gone. Forever. So how do we work around this in order to completely protect our business data?

In this post, we’re taking a closer look at endpoint data protection. In earlier days (read: before BYOD), there was less to worry about when it came to endpoints. As employees started creating, editing, and storing business data on laptops, tablets, and smartphones, it suddenly became a data protection concern that needed to be addressed. What would happen if one of those devices was lost, stolen, or otherwise compromised by hackers? What would happen if one of those employees became disgruntled and left the company – taking along with them, valuable business data? It’s all too easy to leave a smartphone in a taxi, spill coffee across a laptop, or have a tablet go missing in an airport.

Protecting this data, of which 60% is unique and does not exist in other backups, can be an issue with IT. Let’s just say that the management of thousands of endpoints isn’t exactly a walk in the park. Aside from the IT nightmare it presents, most businesses see endpoint data protection as an expensive add-on of which those budget dollars should be spent elsewhere.

We’ve also heard the common viewpoint of, “I have all of my data synced via a sync & share product, so it’s protected.” Sorry to break this to you, but your consumer-grade sync & share does not mean you have a backup at all. If you delete a file from your sync, it’s also deleted on your device. There is no replicated copy for recovery.

So, what is the solution for endpoint data protection? First, consider the types of endpoints you have to protect within your business:

  • Laptops including Windows and Mac
  • Tablets and smartphones across Android and iOS

You need a solution that can protect across varying device types and operating systems. Next, centralize all this data in the cloud with a provider that gives you cloud flexibility. Remote backup and recovery from the cloud is especially important with endpoints, as they’re in distributed environments and can’t always be physically accessed by IT. Whether you have your own data center and need to utilize a private cloud or prefer to use a public or vendor cloud, it’s important to have cloud choice. When it comes time for a recovery, you’ll be glad you did. Transparent deployment that stays out of an end-user’s way will make make it much easier when rolling our your endpoint backup solution.

Additional mobile device management (MDM) features are a critical component to a proper endpoint data protection strategy. Geo-locate and remote wipe, for example, can mean the all the difference between having your data fall into the wrong hands versus staying secure and protected. With geo-locate you’ll be able to determine when and where the data is accessed, as well as by who. Geo-fencing capabilities can prevent access to devices should they turn up in a geographically un-allowed area. Remote wipe capabilities, specifically select wipe, will allow for only business data to be wiped, leaving personal data unaffected, should an employee wish to part ways with a company unexpectedly.

Once you have your solution in place, you’ll want to set up frequent backups — multiple times per day — in order to capture newly changed or created files. Backup all devices on any OS, protect it in the cloud, access it anytime, from anywhere. For IT, this solution will not only alleviate the historical problems and concerns with endpoint backup and recovery, but it will make their jobs easier in the long run.

For a more detailed look at endpoint protection tips and strategies, check out our recent webinar! This on-demand webinar provides insight to the blind spot of backup, endpoint data protection. You’ll learn how to utilize the cloud to fix backup’s blind spot. You’ll hear from both Infrascale and Storage Switzerland to learn the tips and trips for endpoint backup and disaster recovery. You won’t want to miss it, watch on-demand now: Using The Cloud To Fix Backup’s Blind Spot: Endpoint Data Protection.