Why do you need a backup for OneDrive?

Cloud storage allows users to share data and collaborate efficiently and cost-effectively. In today’s market, the cloud is slowly replacing physical storage formats. As more information is being increasingly gathered and used by companies and organizations, non-physical data storage will keep rising in popularity. One of the most popular forms of cloud storage organizations use worldwide is Microsoft OneDrive.

OneDrive is an integral part of the Microsoft Office 365 package, allowing easy data storage and remote work. It offers each user a hefty space of 1 TB with the possibility of expanding that space up to 25 TB. Easy files syncing and sharing with other users make Microsoft OneDrive a popular selection for organizations looking to employ the remote work model. And although Microsoft Office 365 offers tools that can also protect the files stored in OneDrive, you need to create an additional backup to fully secure the data stored in your OneDrive.

And if you are interested in the best practices to guarantee the security of your data in the Microsoft ecosystem, we recommend this our article: Microsoft 365 Security – Best Practices.

Why do you need extra data protection for OneDrive?

The security options offered natively in the entire Microsoft Office 365 package are generally very limited. This is due to the fact that Office 365, and OneDrive included, operate on a SaaS basis. The SaaS, also known as Software as a Service, works on a shared responsibility model. According to it, as a service provider, Microsoft is only concerned with the infrastructure, application uptime, and other elements that ensure smooth and easy access to the Microsoft Office 365 apps. On the other hand, the users are fully responsible for the data’s security, adhering to any necessary retention regulations or other possible legislation which might affect your organization.

Suppose the information stored in your personal OneDrive or OneDrive business is affected by malicious software, or you accidentally deleted an essential bit of data. In that case, Microsoft will be of little help. Although OneDrive offers a retention period on some deleted data, users can reverse some mistakes they have made, provided they are quick enough to notice. This means that only you are responsible for the security of your data stored in Microsoft OneDrive. This is why, to fully secure your OneDrive data, you need an additional OneDrive backup stored at all times.

In the video you can see Storware Backup and Recovery in action!

What are the main dangers to OneDrive data?

Much like other information stored on the internet, there are many threats to your data stored in OneDrive. However, these threats can be easily dealt with with a proper OneDrive backup. You can quickly mitigate any damage done to your infrastructure by taking the right security measures. Some of the main dangers to your OneDrive data include the following:

1. Accidental deletion

One common reason to always have a OneDrive backup handy is the most common human mistake involving the accidental deletion of important data. This often happens when data is removed in bulk when users accidentally remove a piece of information not meant for termination. Data that is just moved to trash (‘soft-deleted) can still be retrieved for a period of time. However, it can no longer be restored when that timeframe closes or if the data were manually deleted from the trash. Whatever the cause, accidental data deletion can cause severe issues if a key piece of data is wiped out irreversibly. Microsoft also offers no assistance in this situation, as it is the user’s responsibility to take care of the safety of their data.

Although it’s possible to accidentally delete a crucial piece of information, a OneDrive backup can easily restore the database to its full functionality.

2. Malware/Ransomware infection

OneDrive offers its users a straightforward way to sync any work they have done offline to their storage as soon as they go online. While this feature makes remote work very easy and allows you to work uninterrupted from anywhere, even places with no internet, it exposes your IT structures to additional external threats. A shared OneDrive syncing once with an infected device can spread the malware further, slowly infecting all of the information as well as other devices used to access it. This makes such attacks particularly dangerous to remote workspaces stored within the cloud. This is even more serious if your company or organization uses a BYOD (‘bring your own device’) model for remote and on-site work.

In addition, data encrypted in a ransomware attack is almost impossible to decrypt without having access to the key. Although attackers always attach a ransom note, paying the money does not always guarantee that your data will be returned safely. Likewise, most IT structures that paid a ransom to their attackers were a target of further ransomware attacks in the future. Although malware and ransomware are hazardous and can cause severe data loss and other damage, having a OneDrive backup can save your data from further damage and ensure your safety against external threats of this type.

If you want to learn more about how ransomware can threaten your data in Microsoft 365, you can find the relevant article HERE.

3. Data security regulations

It is not only in your and your organization’s interest to keep the data stored within your OneDrive secure. Most companies that hold data are subject to several different legal regulations. These laws often dictate details such as what type of data will be stored, how it will be gathered, and how long the companies are obliged to hold on to it. If your organization cannot procure some important piece of data when requested, it can face some serious legal troubles.

The native data protection tools offered by Microsoft do not have the necessary features to protect your organization from falling into possible legal trouble. Because of this, if you want to ensure the safety of your information and its compliance with any data security regulations, your company must use an additional OneDrive backup. Keeping an accessible OneDrive backup at hand can significantly improve the overall security of your IT structures and help you ensure that the data is stored according to all the latest regulations.

4. Retrieval of older data

If an employee leaves an organization, all of their data is generally deleted. In Microsoft 365, this also includes all of their accounts and data stored within them. Part of this data also includes all of the files stored within that employee’s OneDrive. While it is clear that you should delete old, unnecessary, or otherwise redundant data to ensure your IT structures’ full functionality, specific files might not come in handy until later in the future. You might find that by deleting all of the user’s information, you have deleted a file that was only accessible on their OneDrive. Data from a previous employee might also be requested as evidence in criminal proceedings. Either way, you might need to access the older data, which might have already been deleted.

Like accidental deletion, a OneDrive backup can easily help if you look for previously deleted information. Most companies also hold a different number of OneDrive backup files for a prolonged time to be able to access them if the situation deems it necessary.

If you are serious about the security of your data stored and processed as part of Microsoft 365 applications and services (Exchange, SharePoint, One Drive or Microsoft Teams), you should definitely test Storware Backup and Recovery. Use the free Trial or contact us if you are interested in a one-on-one demo.

text written by:

Paweł Piskorz, Presales Engineer at Storware