Why cloud data protection calls for a ‘back-up-as-a-service’ model

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Cloud software is becoming increasingly complex, making it more and more difficult to monitor, backup and secure. 

Considering that the average cost of a data breach in the public cloud is $5 million, organizations are rethinking their cloud data protection strategies. 

This has given rise to the backup-as-a-service (BaaS) model, which allows organizations to store data in the cloud, with providers offering and managing the necessary infrastructure, software and support services. 

To help companies back up and protect their data specific to AWS, BaaS platform Clumio today released new data protection and backup capabilities for Amazon S3. AWS and Clumio will jointly demonstrate the new features at AWS re:Invent this week. 


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“Amazon S3 is becoming increasingly critical to organizations, and its resident data needs to be protected,” said Chadd Kenney, VP of product at Clumio. 

However, S3 — an object storage service allowing AWS cloud customers to store data from anywhere — is a shared responsibility model that is not backed up by AWS. 

“They guarantee the availability of the platform and deal with issues like hardware failures,” said Kenney, “but you are responsible for backing up your data.”

The growth of BaaS

The global BaaS market is expected to grow by nearly $18 billion between 2022 and 2026, representing a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 33%. 

For its part, Amazon has its own built-in backup capabilities that help counter overwriting or accidental data deletion. These include versioning (maintaining multiple object versions in the same bucket), replication (copying objects across S3 buckets) and object locking (object storing through a write-once-read-many model). 

However, organizations aren’t able to restore S3 objects or an entire bucket to a specific point in time; they can only revert objects to one of their last versions, said Kenney. 

Clumio’s platform seeks to address four challenges with S3, he said: protection from accidental deletions; recovery from ransomware and cyberthreats; adherence to compliance and SLA requirements (ISO 2700X, HIPAA, SOC 2); and reduction of AWS backup costs (storage spend or lack of visibility of costs across data services and apps). 

The platform protects data lakes on Amazon S3, databases such as Amazon RDS and DynamoDB, and application data infrastructure such as Amazon EC2 and EBS. 

Granular protection

As Kenney noted, “S3 environments can be massive.” To that end, Clumio tested the platform to protect up to 30 billion objects per bucket. 

Customers now get granular protection with continuous change tracking for Amazon S3 with a Recovery Point Objective (RPO) of just 15 minutes), he said. RPO refers to the interval of time that could pass during a disruption before the quantity of data lost exceeds maximum allowable thresholds. 

The platform also has a zero recovery time objective (the extent of a disruption to normal operations and revenue loss). This feature is now available for early access. 

And, a data protection recommendation feature enables customers to get a full view of their data environment on AWS, consolidate backups across multiple services under a unified air gap, and receive recommendations on how to optimize data protection costs. Clumio can also serve as an immutable (unchangeable) time-machine copy for testing and development and analytics, said Kenney. 

Increased scale, performance, analytics

Clumio competes in its space with AWS Backup, Druva, Acronis, Metallic, Veeam and Rubrik. 

However, the key differentiator is Clumio’s architecture, said Kenney. While other platforms are built on monolithic architecture, Clumio was built from scratch as a serverless data processing pipeline. 

This orchestration engine is “almost like a Kubernetes for Lambda functions that distributes ingest and rehydration,” said Kenney. This has downstream implications for scale, performance and air gap networking.

Notably, customers can granularly protect what they need to, said Kenney. Typically, this is done at a bucket level — and as a result, customers feel compelled to protect everything in that bucket regardless of importance. Clumio customers also receive a calendar pointing to the date and time they need to recover to (as opposed to having to scroll through resource identifiers). 

Ultimately, said Kenney, “customers can keep their data safe and apps, analytics, and AI workloads running even in the face of an outage or disruption.”

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