The Common Causes of Data Loss in Office 365

By Chris Brunau

To celebrate the release of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, we wanted to present Office 365 users with a new hope for their data. Data loss is a common occurrence these days, and SaaS apps are not immune. From basic email to end user files, data loss has become an everyday normality for today’s organizations. When it comes to data loss for businesses, the most common causes are:

  • Accidental deletion (human error)

  • Virus or malware

  • Hard disk or storage damage

  • Software corruption

  • Natural disaster

Microsoft has done a great job to try and mitigate these issues, but is helpless when it comes to the most common cause of data loss in Office 365: human error. In a single slip of a keyboard, a safe and sound critical document can be wiped out forever.

In a survey by the Disaster Recovery Preparedness Council, 3 out of 4 surveyed companies had suffered major data loss, that included:

  • Losing mission critical software applications

  • Losing virtual machines

  • Losing critical files

  • Experiencing multiple days of downtime

Data loss has very real financial implications. In the same study, 20% of the companies surveyed have suffered $50,000 to $5 million in downtime losses due to lost productivity, unrecoverable assets, and lost consumer confidence. The study also found that more than half of companies that will suffer from catastrophic data loss as a result of a natural disaster often go out of business. They simply cannot recover the assets they lost, including customer data, onsite financial documents, application files, etc.

If you can’t bring your business back to normal operations in a little over a week, your chances for business survival plummet. Consumer confidence and employee morale and security are already stretched thin after a disaster, and if your business is not able to resume operations, your competitors will undoubtedly take your customers.

Office 365 as a service has the ability to restore anything within the core environment. In the wake of a catastrophic failure, Microsoft will ensure your data is restored and available through one of the many data centers that it runs specifically for this purpose.

It does not necessarily take a catastrophic failure to warrant a restore of service and data. Simple deletion of content, both by end users and administrators, along with policy enforcement, means a restore is often needed.

If you want to learn everything you need to know about keeping Office 365 data backed up, our eBook has you covered. In Backup for Office 365: A New Hope for Data, we cover the common causes of data loss in O365, retention and restore features, tips for recovery in O365, and more. Download it today!

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