Microsoft 365 Backups and Why Do You Need Them?

5 min read

For most business activities today, Microsoft Office 365 is the ultimate performing platform.

It offers excellent software and incorporates all the components of a classic on-premises solution, including Exchange Online, OneDrive for Business, and SharePoint Online.

Instead of spending a fortune on software and hardware to support Exchange Server, everything is in the cloud.

There is also the advantage that all users get the latest version of MS Office, and you only pay a monthly fee per user to provide all these services.

If your data is secure in the cloud, do you still need to worry about Microsoft 365 backups?

Backing up a Microsoft 365 can be a pretty controversial issue – some people suggest you should back up – and others say there is no need. 

When researching whether you should back up Microsoft 365, you will usually find a lot of content that tells you that you should.

But more often than not, the content is sponsored, paid for, or authored by a company that sells a backup or continuity solution to Microsoft 365. 

Some are written with the express purpose of convincing the reader that Microsoft backups are necessary.

Retention policies are not Microsoft 365 backups by themselves, but they are part of the picture.

Suppose the standard Microsoft 365 retention periods do not meet your needs and you are appropriately licensed in Microsoft 365, such as Office 365 E3. In that case, you will use the built-in service immutability to store business data needs.

Microsoft describes this in one of the many documents on this topic. Crucially, you can ensure that data cannot be deleted for as long as necessary.

Microsoft Office 365 backup Solution

If you need to store data such as an email or a file for ten years and make sure that the user (or hostile administrator) cannot permanently remove it, you can.

Prevention is better than cure

While it is true that if you do nothing to protect your data in Microsoft 365, it is likely that your computer may be infected with malware, and this may encrypt your data in OneDrive or SharePoint for business.

Or, the user may accept a carefully crafted phishing link to a web page that requested access to data in their mailbox, which then attempts to destroy the data.

The challenge will be the same with or without a backup product. Retrieving Data, whether through a robust interface provided by a backup vendor or by choosing the correct method of recovering data in Exchange or SharePoint Online, is a task you would want to avoid.

What do other Microsoft 365 customers typically do?

Large companies have so much data, it takes years to transfer all their emails and files to Microsoft 365.

Recently, there has been a popular suggestion that many digital transformations, which usually take years, now take only weeks.

In some cases, organizations have spent a lot of time planning their actions before acting – but in most cases, the multi-year program takes so long because it has a maximum speed data at which it can be migrated.

For a complete digital transformation, they usually reorganize and move large amounts of existing data.

This is why it’s essential to make sure you have Microsoft backups from a 3rd party:

Data loss in Office 365

The chances of permanently losing Office 365 data due to Microsoft errors are meager – but the chances of losing that data through an end-user or administrator error are not uncommon. People in your organization will inevitably make mistakes.

There is also a risk of ransomware or security breaches that may result in lost data.

User error

User error is inevitable, though—a simple, honest mistake with catastrophic consequences. The most common cause of data loss in Office 365 is a user error. These usually fall into two main categories: accidental deletion of information or intentional deletion of data to find later that it is still necessary.

Also Read: How to Activate Windows 10 Without Using Any Software

Security breaches

Security is compromised at any time when an unwanted person gains access to your Office 365 account. If anyone other than an authorized user logs in to one of your company’s Office 365 accounts, it is a security breach.

The most common type of security breach is when an attacker tricks one of your users into giving up login credentials by allowing them to access their Office 365 account. This is often done through email and social engineering phishing schemes focused on your people rather than technology.

Rogue employees

Sometimes data loss is not the result of an accident but a fake or dissatisfied employee. This unfortunate current or former employee often sabotages company data or computer systems when administrators do not lock them out of their Office 365 account before the employee is notified of their termination.

When the employee returns to clear their desk, they can also compromise their inboxes and the OneDrive or SharePoint folder full of email for clients, file sharing, and company critical documents.

The wisest solution would be to make sure you disable or change employee passwords before dropping them, in order to avoid any potential issue.

Regular review of user behaviour may show that the user is suddenly downloading sensitive information from multiple project locations or outside of the usual page usage patterns.

Also Read: 8 Awesome Tips in Managing Your PDF Files


Third-party Office 365 backup is the best way to protect yourself against accidental or malicious file deletion, other user errors, ransomware, and data corruption.

These solutions store Microsoft backups independently of Microsoft servers and allow granular recovery of Office 365 files, folders, and applications. They guarantee that you can quickly restore and meet Office 365 data retention requirements.

However, not all Office 365 backup tools are created equal. Most do not offer protection for the entire product package – for example, and many do not have support for Microsoft teams.

Others do not offer granular and refund permits. So, when choosing the third-party vendor for Office 365 backup, make sure it meets your data protection needs.

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