City of York cloud data sees new security solution

25th June 2021
Alex Lynn

City of York Council has engaged the help of Barracuda Networks to help protect its Office 365 data with the security firm’s flagship product, Cloud-to-Cloud Backup. The City of York Council in Yorkshire, England, is the unitary authority responsible for allocating resources and delivering services to the more than 210,000 residents of the City of York. For Infrastructure Services Technical Lead, Ian Towner, that responsibility includes the duty to ensure that data is fully protected, whether it is stored on-premises or in the cloud.

“A strong, full-featured backup solution is critically important,” said Towner. “It’s the key to protecting our constituents’ data privacy, to maintaining regulatory compliance, and to ensuring the Council can maintain service levels and operate efficiently without interruption. My team takes all of that very seriously.”

Until early 2019, the Council’s email and other office and collaboration solutions were hosted on-premises. The OEM backup solution that accompanied these systems was satisfactory: It enabled fast data restoration and provided offsite duplication of backups for extra security.

However, once migrated to Office 365, the Council required a new backup solution that guaranteed data privacy and granular recovery of data which could be impacted by ransomware attacks or accidental deletion.

City of York Council decision makers had a series of key requirements which had to be met, before deciding on Barracuda’s Cloud-to-Cloud backup. These included: support for two factor authentication, no on-premises controllers, data had to be stored at rest in the UK, and it had to back up all Office 365 data—not just Exchange, but also Teams, OneDrive, and SharePoint.

Barracuda Cloud-to-Cloud Backup met all those requirements, but a few other factors made it a clear-cut decision for the council.

Towner commented: “Barracuda Cloud-to-Cloud Backup makes it very easy to find and restore individual files in a very granular way. And it’s just as simple to restore entire mailboxes, for instance if an employee leaves and later returns.

“Another thing I like is the fact that admin functions and access policies are separate from Office 365. So we can have a very small number of people authorised to make changes—it wouldn’t do to have a rogue email admin able to delete records!”

Giovanni Goduti, Regional Vice President for Northern Europe  at Barracuda, added: “We are thrilled to be working with the City of York Council who have demonstrated a proactive attempt to ensure that the sensitive data contained on its servers are protected and insured against the increasing threat of ransomware attacks, and the ever-present fears of ‘accidental deletion’ of important files or constituent information.”

Nills Franssens, Senior Cloud Solution Architect, Microsoft, said: “With a cloud-native solution, you get the benefit of scale on your backup, and your solution is fully managed. So unlike with traditional backup solutions, where you have to do capacity management and capacity planning and make sure you have enough storage, a cloud-native solution, like Barracuda Cloud-to-Cloud Backup really offers you a managed solution with virtually unlimited capacity to store your data.”

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