Salesforce data belongs in-house

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An argument for cloud data stored outside of the cloud by Capstorm, Salesforce backup and recovery experts since 2011.

It is simple to backup Salesforce- just create an account an any number of websites, fill your login and password, and provide a credit card. This may sound too good to be true, but it is a surprisingly common practice, and one that neglects several key principles:

1) How to verify that the backup is complete?

Is is possible to verify the accuracy of a backup when the data is hosted on a third party’s servers? Backup completeness is simple when the data is stored in-house because the data can be used for analytics, downstream business processes, pushed to a web service, etc. In addition, some key Salesforce tables have complicated query restrictions such as Knowledge, Attachment, File, etc. Large attachments (600-2000 MB) can require a special approach including a call to Salesforce support to increase the organizations maximum timeout to a value that allows the largest attachment to be read. Is it possible to verify that a backup is complete without full data access?

2) How is the backup protected?
Yes, a 3rd party can take extensive steps to protect client data, but the data is still located on a 3rd party server which increases the risk of data theft. The simplest way to protect Salesforce data is to back up records to a self-controlled relational database. The self-hosted approach to Salesforce backup places all security and access control in the hands of the people who care the most about the data.

3) How frequently does the backup happen?
Let’s rephrase- How close should the backup be to the live production Salesforce? If a field value changes three times in one day, will all changes be captured? For some, a once a day backup may be sufficient, but this can be dangerous if the Salesforce backup is truly intended for disaster recovery. A self-hosted backup allows for more frequent backups and customization of backup frequencies for each object as business needs change.

Is a self-hosted Salesforce backup the best approach?

It depends if a business wishes to actually use the backup data and what level of backup verification is required. Self-hosted Salesforce backup will require investment in infrastructure as the Salesforce backup must be kept on a database somewhere, be it an on-premises server, AWS hosted database, or back office laptop. The small cost to set up a relational database is far less than the business risk of Salesforce backup found to be incomplete when a data disaster strikes.

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