M365 backup—also known as Microsoft 365 backup—is a second copy of the data residing in the Microsoft 365 application. Made to protect against loss or theft, M365 data (and thus M365 backup data) includes Exchange Online, OneDrive, SharePoint Online, Teams, and Groups data.
Microsoft 365 backup should include the ability to recover the data, as this data is often mission critical and required to keep business processes running without disruption. Backup data from M365 can be stored on-premises or in the cloud.
As more businesses deploy Microsoft productivity applications online, IT teams must reimagine their data management and protection strategies. Although Microsoft 365 includes both native and add-on data protection solutions, most fail to deliver the enterprise-grade capabilities organizations now require to meet all of their goals—particularly granular recovery, short- and long-term data retention compliance requirements—as well as protection against human error, ransomware, and other threats.
A third-party M365 backup and recovery solution helps mitigate damage and recover quickly from M365 data-loss events. Such solutions are needed because the native recovery capabilities in Microsoft 365 Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, OneDrive, Teams, and Groups are severely limited. The default data retention safeguards built into M365 have very short—less than a month—retention capabilities.
IT needs an M365 backup and recovery solution that minimizes the expense and time required to manage inactive data and mailboxes put on hold for litigation, mergers and acquisitions, and employee turnover.
According to Microsoft, no. Office 365 is now Microsoft 365. What is different is that O365 was a cloud-based suite of productivity apps while M365 is a bundle of services that includes all of the same productivity apps plus Win 10 Enterprise and other services.
Microsoft 365, formerly Office 365, does have native backup capabilities but they are not robust enough to meet the needs of most enterprises. By default in Microsoft Exchange Online, a mailbox will only be kept for 30 days once it’s marked for deletion. SharePoint Online and OneDrive will also allow for deleted item-level recovery back to 93 days. With a legal hold, many items can be kept indefinitely, but there are some key considerations when using these settings. For example, the entire offering doesn’t have a recovery service-level agreement (SLA), so there is no guarantee of the timeframe in which recovery can occur regardless of the size of the dataset.
Yes, you need to back up your M365 environment. After all, if you lost access to all the data in the business applications that your users routinely use—the Word documents, PowerPoint presentations, Excel spreadsheets, and Outlook emails, among others—you’d lose, at the very least, a tremendous amount of employee productivity. Worst-case scenario, your business could cease to function. Therefore, backing up your entire M365 environment is critical.
Why you need to back up M365:
Some M365 backup solutions charge by the user, either per month or per year. Others offer multi-year discounts, and enterprise plans are available for organizations that have a large number of accounts. Typically, these per-user plans cost between $20 and $30 per user per year. Some of these plans cover all M365 applications, but some only cover part of the M365 environment.
Other solutions, such as Cohesity, charge by consumption—by the storage volume used—independent of the number of users or applications. For large companies, this approach can be more economical—typically 50% less than per-user pricing—as leading vendors perform data deduplication and compression to keep storage volumes, and therefore costs, low.
Because of the limited nature of native backup capabilities in M365, each enterprise needs to take responsibility for protecting its own M365 data. Cohesity’s comprehensive, enterprise-class backup and data management solution for Microsoft 365 is a simple and efficient way to protect M365, Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, OneDrive, Teams, and Groups.
With Cohesity, M365 data can be backed up on-prem, in Microsoft Azure, or as a service with Cohesity’s Backup as a Service (BaaS) offering.