20/04/2011

Where is my data stored when using cloud computing?

Your data will be stored in the vendor’s data centres. Typically, they will store it in two or more facilities for redundancy and continuity. Before signing up, check where your data will be stored. Look for confirmation that their data centres are secure and well run. For example, Microsoft has nine layers of best-in-class security measures, including intrusion detection systems, and multiple data centres to provide a fully-operational backup. This lets Microsoft offer a 99.9 percent uptime guarantee.

Under the Data Protection Act and EU directives, anyone processing personal data must ensure that it is not transferred to non-EU countries without adequate protection. Check that your data will be stored in the EU or that if it is transferred outside the EU there is adequate protection, such as safe harbour agreements.

Can I get my data back when using cloud computing?

Your data is your business’s lifeblood. You need to be sure that you can get it back in a useful format if you decide to switch providers or move to a different system. For example, Microsoft gives you a choice between Microsoft-hosted, partner-hosted or on-premise systems and provides tools to move data, such as emails, from one system to another if you want to change. Make sure that other providers give similar options and reassurance.

Find out more about Microsoft Cloud Solutions

Watch the video below featuring Gill Le Fevre, IW Online Services Product Marketing Manager at Microsoft UK, explaining how Office 365 addresses the challenges that small businesses face.

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