Email Archiving as a Service
Chances are, it's the best email solution you've never heard of! Compliance, legal, and auditing are just 3 or the main reasons why your organization should be considering email archiving as a service.
As the borders between countries gets smaller, and the need to often obtain data for either legal or auditing requirements grow, having all your email stored securely offsite is a great way to ensure that you are protecting your companies intellectual property properly.
Email is great! In fact, it is the most utilized tool on the planet for communication. More emails are sent every day than all other social tools combined. With that comes many new obstacles that are put into place to ensure accountability. If your organization deals with the U.S.A. or any E.U. based companies, chances are you need to ensure you maintain not only adequate backups of your email data, but also archival data.
We often get asked by employees of companies that we manage their email for to retrieve emails from X amount of years ago. This often is impossible. At best, we keep current email backup data for approximately 1 month. These are designed to be used for worst case scenario disaster recovery scenarios where a server has failed and we need to restore from backups.
If for instance an employee has a mailbox of 50GB. Once they hit that limit, they need to start sorting out what email is valid and what can be deleted. Once those emails are deleted permanently, we then have a metric of approximately 1 month to restore those emails before then are rotated out of existence.
A users email mailbox can be littered with emails that go back a long time, and as long as they're maintained within their email application and not deleted, they would be backed up. But space that it uses up on the mail server as well as on their desktop application start to eat into available storage they have available to them.
So then, perhaps they make external folders (PST in outlook for instance) that live outside their application and on their desktops hard drive. Thats fine and great until they need to move their data to a new computer, which isn't overly difficult. The bigger problem is if their computer fails and that data is lost.
It's only backed up until its not!
Compliance is also and issue that companies have to assume responsibility for. In general, email works as follows. Lets say we have a scenario where someone in your organization is up to no good with another person external for some reason (insert your own here)
1.) External email is sent to your employee
2.) The mail server receives the email and then runs through its checks and balances to ensure that it's valid.
3.) The mail server then delivers the email to your employee.
4.) Your employee reads the email and then replies (maybe) to the email and discards the email in the trash.
5.) The employee then deletes the individual message in the sent messages folder along with the email in the trash.
6.) That email is never backed up as its been received, read, replied to, and deleted before the backup window kicks into play.
The only record that exists of this email coming into your mail server are the mail logs that would show you a timestamp of the email, potentially with subject and email ID. In general, thats it.
Email Archiving solves this problem. It allows you to ensure that your email is always backed up. That nefarious email might be deleted from any trace on the server, but before it gets to the users inbox, its siphoned off to an archiving server where it can live up to 7 or more years.
Email archiving solves a lot a problems that can and do arise to companies who are being audited, sued, or have some kind of internal issue that needs to be resolved. With email compliance, there is a full archive of all employees emails from the start date of employment to their date of termination. It make sense. Different various laws and legislation especially in the U.S.A. have prompted companies that deal across borders to maintain email archives for up to 7 years.
In the current case of 90% of companies, thats simply not an option. If an organization is subpoenaed for their email data, chances are they're unable to produce all the email data that is being requested.
We have dealt with issues where employees are leaving their company of employment and they know they have a set leave day and a couple of weeks before they leave, the begin deleing their emails making it harder for their employers to recover and continue to do their jobs. Restoring from backups doesn't work in this case as those emails have been slowly deleted over time and are no longer in the obtainable backups. The damage has been done and outside of sending their computer hard disk out to a forensic restoration facility to try and retrieve the data, the data is lost.
Data restoration companies charge a lot of money to get your data back.
Email archiving is cheaper and offers more benefits.
More often, companies are being hit with legal matters that require them to have access to all of a past employees email. This poses a problem for most organizations as most companies do not have the space to maintain multiple backups that go back multiples years to restore all data. Most companies maintain less than a months worth of email backups. Restoring those backups are often painstaking slow and require lots of storage space to place the files and then make that data available.
Email archiving as a service solves all those problems. Our solution allows every single email that is destined for your domain to be siphoned off into a read only searchable format for legal compliance.
4.) Employee Independence
By utilizing email archiving, employees are able to manage their own email and retrieve and long ago deleted emails that they need to recall. This removes a layer of complexity that your IT department has to deal with in restoring an individual email. They can then work on more pressing tasks that need get done and the your employees have the benefit of having email(s) restored to their INBOX within seconds and not hours or days as emails have to be unarchived and put back into place with current backup practices that are in place.
5.) Peace of mind
Whether you work in the corporate world or not, you probably send and receive multiple emails every day. It’s a fast, convenient way to communicate with peers, colleagues, clients, friends and family. Of course, email is an extremely popular communication tool for companies—in part because of its ability to document conversations and serve as a searchable repository of information.
In fact, studies suggest that three-fourths of an organization’s intellectual property is contained within email and messaging systems. That means it’s important to protect this data and not just send it to the trash. But keeping that much information can overload your company’s storage servers.
- Storage. When email data is stored on live servers, it can greatly reduce performance as the server gets fuller. The only other options are to delete emails altogether—not a wise option, since important data can be lost forever—or store them elsewhere. Email archiving follows this latter option and moves data to a secure off-site server or cloud environment. Some solutions use advanced compression and/or deduplication to reduce the required disk space in the archive—sometimes by 50 percent or more.
- Restoration. Depending on what backup solutions you already have in place, email archiving can speed up the process whenever your data needs to be restored. This is because the archived data takes up less space. In addition, restoring non-archived emails becomes faster and easier, because the mail server’s data load is lessened.
- Security. Just because your old emails are “out of sight” and stored elsewhere doesn’t mean they aren’t protected as well as emails in your live inbox environment. If you’ve got the right email archiving solution, your data is immutably preserved and safeguarded with continuous data backup and premier disaster recovery capabilities. For the best service, look for a provider that delivers reliability, availability and performance with a guaranteed 99.9 percent uptime and financially backed service level agreement.
- Productivity. When your live servers are bogged down with tons of email data, it can make searching for a specific email or a specific subject grueling and slow. In addition, by getting rid of email box quotas and setting up automatic email archiving, employees no longer have to spend precious time deleting emails or moving them to PST files like the old days. Finally, when you give your employees the ability to easily access archived and backed up email data, you place the power in their hands—meaning they won’t have to engage the IT department to do it for them.
- Compliance. Most industries require organizations to keep business records—and since emails often contain such records, deleting them is a no-no. Certain industries like health care, financial services, pharmaceuticals and energy have even stricter regulations about what business records must be kept.