New Market Created for More Cloud-To-Cloud Backup Options

Backing up your information to a cloud is one way of safeguarding your data, but backing up the data that you already have in the cloud is something altogether different. As cloud backup services gain in acceptance, so does the need for data protection as it become a big concern for those organizations that use cloud services. Crucial business information that is stored off-site has to have the same level of protection as the information that is on-site.

A Gartner report that was published in February, stated that the public cloud market is anticipated to expand by nearly $20 billion this year, and reaching approximately $131 billion by the end of the year.


Gartner has estimated that a “strong demand is anticipated” for most kinds of cloud services, including the Software as a Service (SaaS), which represents nearly 15% of the cloud services market, or nearly $19.2 billion. One of the largest portions of the public cloud market is cloud advertising, which represents 48% of revenue for 2012 and the cloud Business Process as a Service, or BPaaS, makes up 28% of revenue. Infrastructure as a Service, or IaaS, has about 5.5% of revenue; cloud management and security, about 2.8%; and Platform as a Service, or PaaS, about 1%.

Cloud-To-Cloud Backup Services

These services, particularly SaaS, require the business’s important business information to exist in the cloud. They are producing a demand for a new kind of data protection called “cloud-to-cloud backup.” This cloud-to-cloud backup option will make sure that all data is stored in popular platforms such as Google Apps and is safe.

Dave Simpson, a senior analyst covering storage for 451 Research, said cloud-to-cloud backup options are a “very small, early-stages market” but have been growing steadily, with vendors such as Backupify, Gladinet, Spanning, CloudAlly, LTech and SysCloudSoft specializing in protecting data in the cloud. Asigra, a general-purpose backup product popular with service providers, added the ability to back up in the latest release of its cloud backup product.

These vendors will be able to let customers regularly back up and encrypt data stored in the SaaS accounts.

“When I first heard about this [cloud-to-cloud backup options], maybe about a year ago, I thought that’s not much of a market, that’s a niche market,” Simpson said. “But these guys are sort of proving me wrong. They’re racking up pretty good numbers. Spanning told me they had 1,700 business customers. Backupify, they’ve got 5,000 business customers, and that’s all in a short period of time … they both launched in mid- to late 2010. That’s a pretty good customer win rate for two years.”

Dave Russell, a research vice president at Gartner, said organizations shouldn’t leave backup of critical data stored in the cloud to the service provider. Cloud-to-cloud backup provides another copy in case something goes wrong.

“You can’t abdicate responsibility,” Russell said. “It does need some amount of oversight. So don’t assume you will have no involvement in the backup process.”

Like some forms of data protection or security, this could take a few imperfect experiences before the cloud-to-cloud backup concept catches on.

“People will learn the hard way,” Russell said. “If they have a provider or a SaaS model that may not be dependable, or they get into that situation where they accidentally make a mistake to, they’ll find out, ‘Well, it’s going to cost me to have this restored or rebuilt, versus if I had my own copy, then I could have had another option.'”

Acquisitions Coming

Simpson said if the cloud-to-cloud market grows large enough, you can expect to see larger backup vendors enter — possibly through acquisition. Backup software giant Symantec already has a financial stake in Backupify as a strategic investor in the startup’s 2012 funding round.

“I would not be surprised if some of the big boys get into this space, most notably Symantec,” Simpson said. “I think it’s interesting that Symantec is an investor in Backupify. That would suggest the potential for a possible acquisition there.”

Other industry leaders for example, EMC and IBM, may wait until the customer numbers reach well into the tens of thousands, but Simpson noted that any addition now would likely be cheaper than waiting and trying to pick up a firm with a bigger customer base.

But if cloud-to-cloud backup is basically a small pond, it is possible that a radical change in the industry could happen if one of the tech industry’s biggest fish — Google — decided to move in. That is a remote possibility, Simpson said, but it could also be fatal to the cloud-to-cloud upstarts if that does happen.

“There’s a big black cloud hanging over these guys, and that’s if Google goes out and offers the [cloud-to-cloud backup] service, which they could easily do,” Simpson said. “That would kill these guys … I’m not saying they would, it would be highly unlikely, because Google, generally speaking, does not shoot their partners in the face.”

To learn more about the cloud and all that it can do for your data , visit data.

To better understand the definition of what the cloud-to-cloud backup is, visit cloud-to-cloud backup.