Protect Your Data in Azure to Be Ready to Recover
Published Mar 08 2023 09:44 AM 4,049 Views
Copper Contributor

We have heard a lot of buzz about the cloud of the last several years as more and more organizations begin to move existing workloads to the cloud, or deploy new ones there.  One thing that can sometimes be overlooked is data protection in the cloud.


There’s lots of things that can happen to your data, from an accidental deletion to someone maliciously deleting files, not to mention the ever present threat of ransomware.   Let’s face it, sometimes things also just happen, like an application upgrade goes awry and we need to roll back to an earlier point in time.


No matter what the case, data protection remains one of the most critical but overlooked aspects of a successful cloud deployment, and successful future operations.  We’ve seen the gaps when it comes to data on-premises, and they have sometimes followed their workloads into the cloud.


One of the toughest aspects of disaster ransomware recovery is making sure that everything has been protected.  In many cases, it is too late when organizations realize that they were not protecting their workloads according to their business requirements, or even at all.


Let’s take a look at how Azure can solve some of these problems with Azure Backup.


Be Ready to Recover with Azure Backup


Azure Backup is built right into Azure, making it simple to deploy to protect your workloads in a streamlined workflow.  Azure Windows and Linux VMs, databases such as SQL Server, SAP HANA, and PostgreSQL, and storage workloads can all be protected from a single, centralized console without complicating administration.


Besides using a single console, you can also use APIs, PowerShell and Azure CLI to automate your data protection policies, allowing you to protect the data in the way that makes the most sense for your requirements.


This is especially important when organizations are working with hybrid cloud configurations that may also span regions.  It is easy to provide data redundancy via Azure Replication, once again without adding excess administrative overhead.


Azure Backup makes it simple to provide baseline data protection, but is packed full of features to help organizations deal with the threat of ransomware, many of which you may not even realize you are already using.


One feature is Azure’s soft delete.  This helps prevent accidental data loss by retaining backups for 14 days after deletion…it can also help organizations who may have not quite figured out their ransomware recovery strategy in a pinch.


In order to prevent attacks, you can also add another layer of protection to your environment by leveraging Multi-user authorization or MUA.  This is a fantastic implementation of the principle of least privilege and ensuring users have only the access to do their jobs.  It greatly reduces the chances of a malicious actor being able to wreak havoc in your environment.


Immutable storage for blob data also ensures that even if the malicious actors do somehow get in, they will not be able to delete or destroy your backup data.


Azure Backup makes it simple to protect and restore data within azure in a cost effective manner, and help organizations plan for recovery operations should they be needed.


Azure Site Recovery and Azure Backup together provide tremendous business value.  Many organizations are in the position where they need to make updates to their BCDR infrastructure, while minimizing downtime and data loss.  Of course, the cost and impact to the business is paramount to much of this planning, and Azure can provide proven cost effective solutions.


Protecting Data in Azure to Meet Business Requirements


In that same vein, organizations can easily extend their existing data protection strategy to Azure by working with one of Microsoft’s Azure Storage archive, backup, and disaster recovery partners.  In many cases, these are the familiar ecosystem partners organizations are used to leveraging on-premises which can help smooth the operational journey to leveraging Azure.

This also allows enhanced integration between hybrid cloud environments when it comes to data protection, and can help streamline the migration process from the data center into Azure. 


Organizations have the flexibility to use the ecosystem partners they already work with both on premises or in Azure.  If they need to make a change to the way they are doing things now to meet their business objectives, they also have the wide ecosystem of partners like Commvault, Rubrik, Veeam, and Veritas to find the solution that works best for their business.


Each ecosystem partner brings their unique features and functionality to Azure, and the ability to protect workloads like Azure VMs, databases, and more.


We have all seen the rise in cloud adoption in recent years, and it is not slowing down.  It is becoming increasingly important to ensure that our data are protected and secure with the rise in ransomware and cyber attacks.


One of the reasons the cloud, especially Azure has been so popular is that there are numerous advantages when it comes to scalability, accessibility, and cost-savings.  Unfortunately the cloud also presents a huge risk when it comes to data security, especially if workloads were not created or migrated with security in mind.


Unprotected data in the cloud can be an easy target for malicious actors looking to force organizations to pay ransom.  By default, Microsoft Azure provides a range of security features designed to protect customers’ data in the cloud.  Beyond simple data protection, these features include encryption, identity and access management, data loss prevention, threat protection, and more.


We know backup is the last line of defense.  By leveraging Azure’s data protection and security features, organizations can ensure that their data is safe and secure in the cloud, and ready to be recovered in the worst case scenario.


The Azure team is constantly innovating, with new features and functionality coming to Azure Backup all of the time.  Features like multi-user authorization to protect resources, Immutable vault,  and enhanced monitoring ensure that organizations are ready to recover at a moment’s notice.

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