Do You Really Need to Backup Microsoft 365 Data?

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I often educate customers on the 3-2-1 rule of backup which is an industry-standard minimum data protection level. The 3-2-1 rule of backup states you should always have:

  • 3 copies of your data (including the original)
  • Stored on 2 different media
  • With 1 copy stored offsite

Does Microsoft 365 by itself meet the 3-2-1 rule backup for customers? Do they provide backup at all?

First, what Microsoft provides to customers natively does not meet the 3-2-1 rule of backup. Microsoft clearly states the responsibility is yours.

Simply Google “Microsoft shared responsibility model” and click the first link.

You will note that at the top of the list of those responsibilities always retained by the customer is “information and data”.  

Companies are increasingly moving from on-premises file and email servers to Microsoft 365 and other cloud services, but backup and data protection in the cloud is too often a secondary thought.  

With the rise of ransomware, other threat actors, and natural disasters, the need for data protection has never been greater. 

You should protect your Microsoft 365 data! 

For help and assistance with protecting Microsoft 365 data feel free to contact us at

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