A smartphone can be forgotten in the backseat of an Uber; spilled coffee could fry the circuits of a laptop; a tablet can be lost in a crowded airport. What if, in all these scenarios, the devices end up in the hands of a hacker? Or worse, the device never got damaged or stolen! It was a make-believe story by a disgruntled employee plotting to use business data for personal gains.
The unprecedented rise in remote working due to the COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increased focus on BYOD (bring your own device) to ensure business runs as usual. However, with employees increasingly storing critical data on laptops, tablets and smartphones, it has become a serious data security concern.
IT professionals that work with a traditional data protection infrastructure can seldom protect data against unsecured endpoints. In fact, a staggering 98% of stolen laptops are never recovered, making endpoints one of the weakest links of the security environment. That’s why endpoint backup plays an important role in modern-day data protection.
What Is Endpoint Backup?
Endpoint backups protect critical data by copying data from endpoints — whether Android and iOS phones/tablets, Windows and Mac desktops/laptops or Windows servers — to data centers. However, the value of an endpoint backup solution lies in how well it performs data restoration in the wake of a data loss incident caused by malicious or accidental deletion, ransomware or any other cyberthreats.
Rationale for Endpoint Backup
While an endpoint backup may not be the fanciest solution to brag about to your IT peers, there are a number of reasons why it has become a critical part of any business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) strategy.
IT teams conventionally limit data protection to server rooms or data centers, often ignoring remote devices. The cost of deploying and maintaining additional infrastructure for a small percentage of workers has made endpoint backups a challenge for IT. With the massive rise in remote working, IT pros can no longer overlook data stored in open endpoints. The demand for endpoint backups has grown massively in recent times, especially since remote employees have become prime targets for phishing and account takeover attacks.
The ransomware problem
A company is infected by ransomware every 11 seconds, with total damages estimated to reach $265 billion annually by 2031. A comprehensive endpoint backup strategy can help recover infected files from an attack without paying a ransom. Paying a ransom doesn’t always guarantee that you’ll receive a decryption key, and even if you do, only 65% of data, on average, is successfully recovered. Moreover, once you pay the ransom, you become a prime target for reinfection. In other words, covering your endpoints with secure backups is a proactive investment you must make to avoid the prospect of paying a future ransom.
The absence of a robust backup and recovery approach often leads to DIY backups by individuals. This can result in having no visibility or control over the data since critical company data ends up being stored across free platforms or in services not sanctioned by IT. If IT isn’t aware of an application, they will be unable to support it and ensure that it’s secure. Unsanctioned file sharing, storage and collaboration solutions may lead to data leaks or violate compliance policies. A study by RSA found that 63% of employees send work documents to their personal email, exposing company data to networks and platforms that aren’t monitored and regulated by internal IT.
4 Things to Consider Before Choosing an Endpoint Backup Solution
Choosing the endpoint backup solution can be overwhelming for IT pros. Whether you’re making a switch or installing your first endpoint backup solution, it needs to be the right fit for your BCDR goals.
Resolving tickets for endpoint issues for everyone at the same time can lead to expensive IT help desk costs. Look for a backup solution that offers a range of self-service options. By empowering users in this manner, restores are accomplished quickly and maximum productivity is ensured.
Backup and restoration deployment needs to be flexible for effective endpoint protection. Being able to deploy the backup solution on-premises, in the cloud and in SaaS environments gives IT pros significant autonomy. Cloud backup solutions, in particular, have risen in popularity among hybrid work environments. They involve backing up data from a device by replicating it to a secure public or private cloud data center without any on-prem footprint or management effort. Moreover, flexible scheduling for endpoint backups makes managing endpoints easy and elastic.
3. Resource optimization
As endpoint backup solutions deal with remote devices, they should be optimized to replicate data over the WAN. Look for a solution that offers deduplication, compression and encryption (for security), as well as options for incremental backups or incremental forever backups. In an incremental forever strategy, the initial backup will be full and all subsequent backups will be incremental to optimized data transfer and recovery times. It will help meet even the tightest RTOs (Recovery Time Objectives) and save you storage space.
An efficient endpoint backup solution simplifies the user interface by unifying the best-of-breed approach with centralized management. By seamlessly managing backup and recovery for your endpoints from a single pane of glass, IT pros and businesses save time and money respectively.
Endpoint Protection With Unitrends
Protecting the endpoints of an organization from any vulnerabilities is challenging. However, a good data security solution like Unitrends Unified BCDR can help secure all endpoints without breaking a sweat.
Unitrends enables effortless, automated data protection for on-the-go workforces and remote devices (laptops, PCs and servers), with straightforward, cloud-based endpoint backup. No on-prem storage and IT management are necessary since all backups are stored securely in the Unitrends Cloud. Learn more about Unitrends Endpoint Backup.