What Happens if the Public Cloud Goes Down

March 21, 2018

What Happens if the Public Cloud Goes Down

By Henry Washburn

More business data than ever before exists in public clouds today. Email, file data, contacts, and more can be accessed from anywhere on any device with no local servers. So, what happens when you lose access to that information?

Business stops.

If AWS, Azure, or Google experience a DDOS attack or an outage, a small business that relies on access them cannot book revenue.

So what can a business do?

Enlist a Managed Service Provider to do a threat assessment.

What does that entail?

Turns out, not much different than what an MSP would normally do with servers and workstations that are onsite. To get a full perspective of what end users need to maintain business function in any type of disaster, MSPs ask the following:

  1. How do users access their data?

  2. Where is their data located?

  3. What much loss of revenue is acceptable?

Let’s look at a scenario where a law firm has all their data stored in Office 365 and financial information is stored and functions locally. Then Office 365 becomes inaccessible.

They can’t remain in contact via email with their clients, access the dockets they are working on, or collaborate with colleagues. Therefore, they can’t bill for time worked.

An office of 10 lawyers (let’s assume they bill at an average of $370/hr) working and two paralegals per lawyer (let’s assume they bill at an average of $145/hr), revenue lost is 10 x 370 + 20 x 145 = $6,600 in 1 hour of downtime.

If you have an office with one lawyer and no paralegals the numbers are smaller but the firm’s reputation can be impacted negatively. How about if ransomware encrypts that cloud data? The end user would likely be unable to book revenue for an even longer amount of time.

As an MSP, you can prevent the revenue loss associated with downtime. It’s important for you to take the initiative and educate them about the potential threats and how to mitigate them. The most crucial part of that agreement is action. Make sure that their SaaS data is in protected in a another location. Show them the work that you are going to do and the service you are going to provide. It reinforces the value that you provide for your service cost.

You’re the greatest tool to ensuring your customers can continue their business in the face of dangers, remind them of that.

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