What is the Difference Between Cloud Storage and Cloud Backup?

The cloud has become more pervasive in the last few years and in particular, the last two years. It has certainly helped businesses with their march to digitally transform and reimagine their operations.  

With the pervasiveness of the cloud comes terms that are used in conversations about the cloud but that really, could and should be better defined. This way businesses would have a better understanding of what they mean and how they are beneficial. 

In this article, we will focus on Cloud Storage and Cloud Backup. At a high level, cloud storage provides access to information from anywhere, whereas cloud backup saves your data in case of damage or loss.  

Let’s look at each one in more detail. 

Cloud storage 

Cloud storage is putting information into the cloud, which is an offsite safe and secure location. Simply put, cloud storage is like an external drive in an offsite location, accessed via the internet. It provides access to folders, allowing the user to store as much data as they need and is charged accordingly. Another advantage is the safety it offers, the information stored is replicated, making it available under most circumstances.  

Cloud providers utilize services such as Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud or Amazon Web Services (AWS) which handle data recovery and privacy. Another benefit to using cloud storage is the ability to increase the amount you want to store at any time. Unlike with an external drive, which you would have to buy a whole new device, with cloud storage you can increase the storage capacity of your account by simply advising your Cloud provider to increase your storage limit which will increase your subscription fee.  

One thing to keep in mind about cloud storage is the manual entry of all the files you want to store; it does not back up automatically in most cases. 

Cloud backup 

A fully functioning backup service should automatically back up data regularly, which is one of the biggest benefits of backup. In addition, it should ensure privacy by encrypting a user’s data. It should offer multiple file versioning of previous versions and track the changes made.  

To ensure security, a reliable service should compress and de-duplicate data to save on storage expenses as well as have the option to back up select files or all files. In case of damage or loss, cloud backup will have the ability to recover your information instantly, with the most up to date version available.   

In summary, cloud storage is accessed through the internet, storing data in a remote offsite center. Cloud backup allows for the transfer of data to remote servers and backups of the data are done based on the requirements identified. Both may be required and are beneficial to businesses.  

MicroAge can help you define your data requirements and needs to determine the best cloud storage and backup solutions. Contact us today. 

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