MSPs whose clients are using cloud services need to be aware of the risks associated with storing data in the cloud.

eFolder Guest Blogger

December 1, 2014

4 Min Read
The Five Ways SaaS Data is Lost

It’s clear: The cloud has boosted productivity, increased collaborative possibilities and made employees more comfortable working from anywhere. Whether people are using Google Apps or Office 365 to manage their emails, contacts, calendars and documents; managing their CRM through Salesforce; or storing important business information in Box, cloud services have proven their value and are certainly here to stay. This begs the question: How safe is data stored in the cloud?

A 2013 study by the Aberdeen Group on SaaS data loss and the reasons behind it reveals a sobering statistic: 32% of companies using SaaS (software as a service) services have reported losing data. While nearly every cloud solution provider has robust servers and offers excellent uptime guarantees, most of them do not include a comprehensive backup system. MSPs whose clients are using cloud services need to be aware of the risks associated with storing data in the cloud. Here are the five ways SaaS data is lost:

1. User error: 64%

Let’s face it: Everyone makes mistakes. It’s incredibly easy for anyone to hit the delete key on an important message while combing through his or her inbox, or for someone to overwrite a document stored in the cloud. Then what? Retention policies through major SaaS providers are notoriously spotty. For example, Google Apps and Salesforce do not retain data at all once it’s deleted from the Trash/Recycle Bin. Preventing users from making mistakes is not exactly a sound corporate policy; an actual cloud backup solution is important, especially when almost two out of every three cases of data loss involve accidental deletion.

2. Hackers: 10%

Even eliminating accidental data deletion won’t eliminate the chances of your clients’ data getting hacked by an outsider. With so much information stored in the cloud rather than on-premises, this is a serious issue that businesses need to carefully consider. While most cloud providers encrypt data in transit and at rest, all it takes is a hacker stealing just one employee’s credentials before the hacker can wreak havoc on a large amount of important information. Think about how many of your clients’ employees are using Salesforce or Google Apps, as an example, and you’ll get a sense of the risk hackers pose to your clients.

3. Closed accounts: 10%

As you know, your clients’ employee roster is never set in stone, as it likely falls on you to close accounts for employees who leave and create new ones for employees who join. When employees leave, what happens to the data they have stored in, say, Box or OneDrive? What about their Google Docs or Gmail? Critical information could be lost if employees leave and their cloud accounts are deleted. Since it’s likely these cloud accounts contain potentially important and/or confidential business information, ensuring your clients still have access to this data even after one of its employees leaves is incredibly vital. Backing up your clients’ SaaS data is the only way to ensure it can be accessed even if the original source of the data is deleted.

4. Malicious deletion: 7%

Sure, accidents happen. But what if data is deleted deliberately? And nefarious hackers aren’t the only ones who could find their way into your clients’ cloud accounts and delete important information. Disgruntled employees (present or past) could easily log in and delete emails, contacts, customer data, documents and more. Once that data is deleted and the Trash/Recycle Bin is emptied, your clients’ information is gone–unless you have a regular backup of every employee’s data.

5. Third-party software: 7%

Bad data migration procedures involved with third-party software could pose a serious threat to your clients’ SaaS data. With so many different ways for people to store emails, contacts and documents on their various devices, it is incredibly easy for important information to be overwritten. For example, imagine an employee of one of your clients chooses to import her personal contacts from her phone onto her computer, and accidentally overwrites some entries in her Outlook contact database in the process. Once that data syncs to the cloud, it is difficult to catch and undo the damage without a backup solution that can recover the deleted information.

Given the risks of data loss associated with SaaS applications–nearly a third of companies have lost information stored in the cloud–a thorough cloud-to-cloud backup solution is imperative to ensuring the security and integrity of your clients’ data. eFolder Cloudfinder is a comprehensive solution that can back up and restore data stored in instances of Office 365, Salesforce, Google Apps and Box. MSPs who deploy Cloudfinder can give their clients the assurance that their cloud data is always backed up, searchable and recoverable at a moment’s notice.

Find out more about Cloudfinder at

Neeraj Periwal is Marketing Coordinator, eFolder. Guest blogs such as this one are published monthly and are part of MSPmentor’s Cloud-based File Syncing and Sharing Infocenter.


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