10 Things To Know Before Getting Into Cloud Archiving

10 Things To Know Before Getting Into Cloud Archiving

Cloud Archiving was once a high-tech luxury that only the innovators opted for. However, regulations and compulsions on the state level have converted this luxury into a necessity. The incomparable benefits and convenience that cloud archiving offers also make it a must-have.

Having said that, cloud archiving should not be an impulsive choice. Different organizations have varying requirements. In addition, the scale of the business, its industry, and other factors determine the individual needs of cloud archiving. This article highlights all such considerations before you opt for cloud archiving.

1. Necessity of Cloud Archiving

Necessity of Cloud Archiving

The benefits of cloud archiving are well known. There are no doubts about the convenience it brings and the increasing inclination towards this service. Statistics show an exponential growth of the information archiving market from 4.05 billion US dollars in 2014 to 7.99 billion US dollars in 2023.

However, cloud archiving being a choice or necessity depends on the business or organization. Some industries have the compulsion to archive data. These include banks, stock brokers, healthcare institutes, and businesses that collect customer information.

These businesses and organizations must archive their data. Failure to do so results in legal action against these setups. Therefore, they must reach out to a cloud-archiving software that is well aware of the regulations and complies with them.

On the contrary, businesses that provide services or small businesses are not mandated to have an archiving system. Instead, they opt for cloud archiving considering its convenience and security.

Therefore, before getting into cloud archiving, you must determine whether you need this system. For example, suppose your business or organization falls under the list of industries and sectors mandated to have cloud archiving. In that case, you must have an archiving system that you can use on a daily basis. Otherwise, you can choose whether you need cloud archiving.

2. Industry-Specific Features

Industry-Specific Features

Before you decide to finalize cloud archiving, you must have your business dynamics in mind. This helps you choose your service provider more effectively.

Cloud archiving is perceived to be a generic service that encompasses all industries and business types. Although this is true to some extent, some cloud archiving service providers specialize in providing targeted services exclusive to business scales, types, and industries.

Organizations look for reputation and cost-effective solutions when deciding on service providers. However, a better approach is to opt for a service provider that understands the exclusiveness of your work. The data storage requirements, volumes, and duration of banks are very different from that of the media industry.

Therefore, the best practice is to grasp the industry-specific needs of your organization and build relevant expectations from cloud archiving providers.

3. Compliance

Compliance

As mentioned, regulations and laws make it compulsory for some industries to archive their data. However, choosing a service provider whose services do not align with the regulations can cause more harm than good. You may end up in legal whirlpools despite investing money in cloud archiving.

Strict regulations such as PSD2, GDPR, and PCCI impose hefty penalties on non-compliance. Therefore, it is imperative to choose reliable cloud archiving providers that are aware of the regulations and comply with them fully.

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4. Cost

Cost

For businesses of every scale, the cost is important. Organizations are careful before making decisions since they must see how much they will cost. Small businesses use simple services such as Google Drive or OneDrive to store or back up their data. However, this does not work for some industries, such as healthcare, legal, and government departments.

Usually, companies opt for the lowest-cost storage options. However, it is essential to consider other factors for cloud archiving. Apart from storage rates, it is essential to see the services included in a package.

Cloud archiving service providers calculate the cost of their services differently. They determine the storage rates according to volume, bandwidth, days of storage, and add-ons such as e-discovery, data protection, etc.

Therefore, you must consider your requirements before choosing your service provider. It is essential to have a costing model and compare plans and services by different cloud-archiving service providers. A comparison facilitates decision-making. It is also effective in engaging in a bargain with your desirable service provider to negotiate on the price or included features.

In addition to the services included, payment plans must also be considered. For example, some cloud archiving services charge monthly, while others charge yearly. Small enterprises opt for paying monthly services. 

This allows them to test the system and sync with the new technology. On the other hand, established organizations go for yearly payment plans to skip the constant need to pay for services.

Before locking your service, consider your payment plans and choose the one that offers more convenience.

5. Scalability

Scalability

Cloud archiving is a relatively new concept for several companies and businesses. Countless enterprises are still familiarizing themselves with the service. They are in “exploration mode.” 

Forcing these enterprises to dive head-first into a complex system can be challenging. Additionally, it may bring problems for the clients and the service providers and cause tension.

The ability of a cloud archiving system to offer scalability is an important consideration. Choose a service provider that can scale your services as you go. Scalability allows you to understand the benefits of cloud archiving before increasing storage.

Scalability works best for growing businesses. Business owners can choose to archive a small chunk of their data. Later, they can increase storage volume as their business grows or per their needs. 

Cloud archiving services that charge on a per-volume basis are the best choice. They allow you to pay according to storage volume instead of other complicated or hidden charges.

6. Storage Requirements

Storage Requirements

Data archiving is storing data for long-term retention. Keeping this definition in mind while looking for service providers will help you choose the right service provider.

Cloud archiving service providers charge their clients in several ways. For example, they might charge based on the bandwidth needed to store and retrieve data, the volume of storage, or any other criterion. However, the storage volume is the most common method of devising a price plan.

Therefore, as clients, you must be aware of the storage requirements of your data. Small volumes can be easily stored in shared storage solutions such as Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, etc. You can buy more storage if the existing plans are insufficient for your storage needs.

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However, the storage requirements of large enterprises are different. They have different data types and must retain them for a long time. 

There are two main types of data storage solutions: online and offline. The online system lets you store your data on the cloud. This data is quickly accessible from any location. However, this data is prone to hacking. Service providers use a private network to store your data to mitigate this threat, but it might incur more costs.

The offline or onsite solution involves having an onsite storage setup for the client organization. Such options reduce the risk of data breaches and are cost-effective. However, stored data cannot be accessed from multiple locations.

7. Data Security

Data Security

Stringent regulations are in place to maintain data confidentiality and integrity. Suppose you go for a cloud archiving system that fails to promise data security. In that case, you are investing a significant amount for a service that is non-compliant with the core purpose of data archiving.

Data security is the top reason why industries decide to archive their data. But unfortunately, sensitive information is constantly at risk of hacking or unauthorized access. 

In addition, data is most vulnerable during transfer since no data protection methods are in place. Therefore, before you go for cloud archiving, you must keep data security on top of your considerations.

All cloud archiving systems promise the security of data. Therefore, the things to consider are the level of security of each promise. 

Some common questions you can ask your service provider are about the encryption methods that prevent data breaches during migration. 256-AES encryption and SSL technology are the best practices for data encryption.

It would be best to ask your service provider how to ensure the anonymity of their client’s data. For example, government institutions and banks need to pay special attention to data anonymity since it is one of the reasons they are mandated to archive their data on the cloud. 

Therefore, cloud archiving providers must guarantee data confidentiality for these organizations. In addition, they must have effective intrusion prevention and detection systems in place. Firewalls and encryption keys also ensure the security of personal data.

A clear understanding of the data security measures provides peace of mind to clients and builds trust in cloud archiving systems. Cloud archiving service providers must take their clients into confidence and update them with foolproof security measures.

8. Data Retrieval

Data Retrieval

Cloud archiving is about more than just storing and remembering data. Stored data needs to be retrieved at some point too.

In addition, businesses may need access to their data for legal or internal purposes. Therefore, consider the ease of data access and retrieval before you finalize your service provider.

Different service providers have varying retrieval and access requirements. Retrieval of stored data takes a long time for offline storage solutions.

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On the other hand, online data is easily and instantly accessible. Some service providers charge an additional fee to make data accessible. Other aspects are involved, too, such as authorization or involvement of third parties to access data which affects business productivity.

Undoubtedly, the time invested in retrieving information affects operational efficiency. Work is halted until the desired information is accessed. Therefore, you must consider the retrieval time before making a decision. Choose a service provider that promises the quickest data retrieval system without additional costs.

9. Data Recovery

Data Recovery

All data, regardless of volume, is vital for an enterprise or business. First, however, it would be best to determine whether you require a data recovery system in your service package of cloud archiving.

Small businesses usually do not need data recovery systems. However, they may choose one if their data is sensitive in nature or needs regular access.

Data recovery systems allow businesses to access their stored data in case of a disaster or accidental data loss. The efficient recovery systems have recovery points from which they recover all lost data. For these reasons, file recovery is the most desired cloud storage feature for IT professionals.

As a client, you must analyze the importance of a recovery system for your data. The most important question is whether your data’s nature mandates recovery. 

For example, healthcare institutes and legal organizations must have data recovery systems to ensure data access even in the most unforeseen circumstances. Other businesses may need recovery systems for some data, but not all.

Considering all your data before deciding on this factor and choosing your service provider is essential. It is better to enable recovery systems on extremely crucial data and opt for a simple archiving system.

10. eDiscovery

eDiscovery

State institutions such as law firms, government agencies, and businesses dealing with sensitive information must have cloud archiving systems that offer eDiscovery features. eDiscovery is vital to access information for litigation purposes.

eDiscovery allows quick access to a wide range of data from social media, email or message correspondence, and call records. eDiscovery is different from data retrieval in terms of the speed of access and information accessible.

Suppose you belong to an organization with access to confidential information. In that case, regulations mandate you to have adequate data storage solutions with enabled e-discovery systems. Cloud archiving service providers enable indexing to facilitate data search and access. Additionally, the process is quicker.

The TakeAway

Cloud archiving is a novel technology that offers unprecedented convenience and benefits. As a result, some businesses choose to go for these services, while for others, it is a mandatory practice. In either case, there are some essential things to consider before opting for cloud archiving.

Keeping all mentioned factors and considerations, we recommend you choose ShareArchiver as your cloud archiving service provider. ShareArchiver offers valuable features to users so they can experience the convenience of cloud archiving and reap the benefits of other tools and software we offer. If you wish to relieve the burden of data storage, feel free to contact us and discuss our services in detail.