Data at the edge: remote sites and business continuity

Comm Vault argues ME IT needs to address the data protection gap at outlying branches

Tags: CommVault Systems IncorporatedUnited Arab Emirates
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Data at the edge: remote sites and business continuity Allen Mitchell, senior technical account manager, MENA, CommVault Systems.
By  Allen Mitchell Published  June 16, 2013

With more and more critical data residing at the edge of the enterprise in remote or branch offices (ROBOs) and on client systems, the ability to reliably protect and quickly recover this data has become more critical to business continuity and end-user productivity. In addition, an increasingly mobile workforce is creating and sharing more data outside the traditional control of those primarily tasked with protecting it.

If organisations are not able to efficiently and effectively address these challenges, they face significant business risk associated with losing or having to recreate unprotected edge data, not knowing what data exists in an environment and not being able to find it in association with a lawsuit or compliance requirement.

Protecting and recovering data at remote sites and at end-points using legacy technologies can consume scarce resources, require expertise that often isn't present, and is prone to failure. In addition, these isolated systems can be expensive to deploy and manage. In the case of a site-level disaster such as natural disasters, human error, viruses, and security breaches, organisations need to have a copy of important data stored safely, far away from the remote office that holds the original copy, but that is still easily and rapidly accessible. Without a centralised strategy, organisations are at risk from lost data, which can result in reduced operational capability and employee productivity as well as a range of other business consequences.

ROBOs and end users present a range of data management challenges

Data outside the data centre is often just as critical to the success of your organisation as that residing within it. Yet, this data is often unreliably protected due to insufficient network bandwidth, a lack of trained IT staff at remote sites and the high cost associated with managing distributed multi-platform environments.

As the volume of data created and stored at the edge of the enterprise continues to grow, legacy data protection and management tools have become less capable of easily protecting it and ensuring business continuity. The data management burden on staff members at remote sites, who often are not IT professionals, is significant and continues to grow along with the data. Expecting end users to perform their own backups puts data at risk and limits your visibility into what data is in your environment. In addition, if you don't have an easy-to-use way for end users to recover their own data from a centralised protection plan, then the IT staff will easily become overburdened performing requests to find files for them.

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