OneDrive for Business Backup Options

As it said in Microsoft’s terms of service, they don’t carry any responsibility for user’s carelessness or malicious actions of threat actors. That means that

What is OneDrive for Business?

What is Backup?

You might think it is simple, and you know the answer, but, as it turns out, a lot of end-users and administrators don’t. Simply copying your data somewhere from time to time is not enough to be called a “backup.”

Backup is a process of regular and frequent copying of business-critical data to a separate and secure location, with a possibility of quick and seamless restoration of all files you need. The words in bold determine the notion of backup, so even if one of them is missing, it can’t be called a backup. But, of course, all those words can be interpreted differently depending on how well you understand the very meaning of them.

Does Microsoft have native OneDrive backup options?

If we are speaking about the options that meet all the requirements we mentioned above, then no. But there is a OneDrive Sync Client app that can be used to partially cover those requirements in case you don’t have a better option. We are showing how to use this service below.

What is OneDrive Sync Client?

This is a synchronization tool that serves as a data bridge between your devices and OneDrive. It helps you to access your OneDrive data from your personal device everywhere at any time. When the internet is working, the changes will be synchronized automatically, so that the actual data will be accessible even in case of an outage.

When you set up Sync Client, you choose folders that you want to synchronize. There is a two-way file synchronization:

1. From your OneDrive to your local machine;

2. From your local machine to OneDrive.

You can choose to do both, or pick a one-way synchronization only. In the first case, no matter where you change files – on your local device or OneDrive, – the changes will be reflected in both of them. In the second case, the changes will be reflected only in one place. For example, you can choose to copy any changes in your data on OneDrive to the local machine, but not copy to OneDrive any modifications you make on your synchronized local documents, and vise versa.

In which cases can you use OneDrive Sync Client as your backup?

There is a number of cases when you can take a risk by using this service as your backup plan:

  1. If you have small volumes of data and its inconstant flow.
  2. If you don’t store on your OneDrive for Business any sensitive information about your customers, employees, or suppliers. This type of information includes financial data, personally identifiable information, medical records, etc.
  3. If data loss won’t cause a shipwreck of your company.

If all the points match your situation, go to Microsoft’s simple tutorial on how to set up Sync Client for Windows and Mac.

When you need a third-party backup solution

The short answer will be: if at least one point in the list above is not your case, you definitely need a proper third-party backup solution. But there actually is a big list of reasons to backup not only your OneDrive for Business but your whole Office 365 data.

Perils of not backing up your data:

1. Data Loss. Data is the powerhouse of the business, its main asset. And there are tons of ways to lose it:

  • Human factor. It includes accidental and intentional deletions. Not all deletions can be reversed, like those where the user empties the trash bin. To find out more about the files recovery, read about Office 365 recovery deleted items.
  • Ransomware attack. Encryption of all your business-critical data can hit your wallet and paralyze your workflow.
  • Outages and shutdowns. For example, if Azure experiences an outage or their data centers have suffered from a disaster, consider your data as lost. This is also a good reason to always keep your backups separate from the main one, on the different cloud storage.

2. Non-Compliance. The violation of the data regulations leads to legal repercussions, and those can cost you a fortune; for some businesses, the cost of a violation can go far beyond the cost of the business itself.

3. Loss of reputation and trustworthiness. Aside from putting at risk your business processes by losing data, you also become an unreliable partner, employer, and provider.

So if you want to feel safe, we advise you to backup your OneDrive and Office 365 in general with a third-party backup service. Read our Office 365 backup guide for more information, and may your data be safe!


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