Should You Backup Microsoft 365? 7 Reasons Why the Answer is YES

data center, Microsoft Office 365 backup solutions

Did you know that over 80% of active Microsoft 365 accounts have suffered an email breach and over 70% have suffered an entire account takeover?  This makes Microsoft one of the largest targets for hackers with over 300 million users worldwide.

These numbers are startling, but many businesses mistakenly assume that Microsoft provides comprehensive data backup and recovery for Office 365 data. However, protecting data falls solely on the organization. Following the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a significant increase in companies allowing their employees to work from home, and with that comes the need for strong enterprise cybersecurity. Still not convinced? Here are seven reasons Veeam states as critical to back up Microsoft 365.


  1.  Accidental Deletion

    If you delete a user, intentionally or by accident, this action is replicated across the network, along with the deletion of their OneDrive for Business account and mailbox. Relying on the native recycle bin provides limited recovery, especially when Microsoft 365 has geo-redundant deletion that removes the data forever. 

    There are two types of deletion in the Microsoft 365 platform, soft delete and hard delete. A soft delete can still be found in the Recoverable Items folder. A hard delete is when an item is tagged to be purged from the mailbox database completely. Once this happens, it is unrecoverable, period.

  2. Retention policy gaps and confusion

    In this digital age there is a lot of data and rules to manage and retain all that content. Ensuring that every employee understands and follows proper retention policies is difficult. Even more challenging is relying solely on Microsoft 365 for back-up and retention.

    Microsoft 365 backup solution is very limiting and is not intended to be an all-encompassing backup solution. Therefore, you will need a reliable back-up solution for both.

  3. Internal Security Threats

    When you think about security, most people instantly think of outside threats such as hackers and viruses. However, inside threats happen every day in business, both intentionally and unintentionally. From remote workers, to attrition, it has become more difficult to monitor who has access and who what data and what has been downloaded on their device.

  4. External Security Threats

    External cyber threats are on the increase, wreaking havoc by damaging company reputations when data is compromised or lost. Even with proper communications to warn users of possible threats, deceptive emails and attachments catch many employees by surprise. 

    Exchange Online’ s limited backup/recovery functions are inadequate to handle serious attacks. Ensuring a robust cyber security and data recovery solution are in place along with regular backups, will your data is uninfected and that you can recover quickly from an attack.

  5. Legal and Compliance Requirements

    Legal and compliance requirements guide many industries, dictating data storage rules. Even in less regulated sectors, retrieving emails, files, or other data types is necessary amid legal action or audits. Microsoft has built-in a couple of safety nets (litigation hold and retention). However, there needs to be a more robust backup solution to keep your company out of legal trouble.

  6. Managing Hybrid Email Deployments and Migrations to Microsoft 365

    When an organization adopts Microsoft 365, there is typically a transition period from the on-premises Exchange to the Microsoft 365 Exchange. Some companies leave a portion of their legacy system for control and flexibility. These hybrid email deployments are typical yet pose additional management challenges. Therefore, when selecting a backup solution, ensure it can handle hybrid email deployments that include Microsoft 365.

  7. Teams Data Structure

    With the rise of remote work, there has been a significant increase in the number of companies using Microsoft Teams. Microsoft structures Teams as a user interface that combines Microsoft 365 services, such as SharePoint Online and OneDrive, to create an effective productivity tool. So, when protecting the data in Teams, it’s essential to select a purpose-built backup solution that can protect more than the Teams data but also associated interconnections between applications.

Microsoft 365 Backup with DartPoints 

Don’t make the unfortunate assumption that just because Microsoft hosts the infrastructure, that they will also cover back-up.  It is the responsibility of an organization to back up its mission-critical Microsoft 365 data. Let us help you get started, download our Microsoft 365 Backup checklist.