Backup as a service (BaaS) is an approach to backing up data that involves purchasing backup and recovery services from an online data backup provider. Instead of performing backup with a centralized, on-premises IT department, BaaS connects systems to a private, public or hybrid cloud managed by the outside provider. Backup as a service is easier to manage than other offsite services. Instead of worrying about rotating and managing tapes or hard disks at an offsite location, data storage administrators can offload maintenance and management to the provider.
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BaaS may be used when an organization has outgrown its legacy storage backup and would have to go through a costly upgrade, or lacks the resources for on-premises, high-level backup. Outsourcing backup and recovery to a provider can also keep data accessible or restorable from a remote location in case of an outage or failure.
Concerns and features to look for
Some common concerns with backup as a service include:
- Cross-platform issues
- Compliance concerns that regulate an organization's ability to store data in the cloud
- Security concerns, such as encryption, access control lists and role-based authentication
- Additional bandwidth requirements
- Pricing. Costs can change as the amount of data increases, so savings may not be guaranteed.
Ben Woo, founder of analyst firm Neuralytix, discusses bandwidth limitations and charges that might apply when using backup as a service.
Among the features to evaluate when looking at a backup as a service are:
Some current backup-as-a-service providers include Acronis, Barracuda, Carbonite, MozyEnterprise, SOS Online Backup, Vembu and Zetta.net.