Choosing to archive data can be a decision derived from a multitude of different desired outcomes. Your organization may need to adhere to compliance standards, want to retain historical data, or are simply trying to save resources. No matter the desired outcome, the first step is understanding the definition of data archiving. The simple definition is:

Data Archiving helps to preserve older data that is no longer needed on an everyday basis.

In more description, implementing a data archiving solution allows your organization to reduce primary storage and the associated costs by reducing access to older information. Data archiving solutions do not act as data recovery tools, in some cases the archives can only be viewed, to help protect them from modification. Like document management systems, data archiving solutions are essential for businesses.


Benefits of Data Archiving

  • Reduced Costs – by archiving data you help reduce costs in two areas. First, it is very common for historical data to still be in its physical paper form. Physical documents tend to take up a significant amount of storage space, by choosing to archive this data you can reduce or even eliminate storage space costs. Second, if you already store all of your data digitally, choosing to switch to a data archiving strategy can mean a lower maintenance and operation cost since archived data is typically stored on low performance, high capacity media.
  • Controlling Compliance – within most data archiving solutions it is possible to set rules for file lifecycles and authorized users to abide by. An example of this is setting a rule for the necessary length of life of a document, this also helps reduce storage space and keeps files organized. Additionally, using data archiving solutions makes files more indexable and thus easier to retrieve when needed.
  • Increased Security – the documents you choose to store in a data archiving system should be those that have a low tendency of use. Without a data archiving system files that are not needed as often are still in circulation, data archiving reduces the frequency at which they are being accessed. As a result, these archived documents are less vulnerable to cyber-attacks. Referring back to compliance, it is also possible to set restrictions within the data archiving system that only allow access to specific users, helping to increase security measures.
  • Prevention of big data loss – in most causes it is common to be holding onto old physical files. These data sources are extremely vulnerable to destruction or misplacement. Data archiving systems turn your physical documents into digital eliminating this form of loss. Within the data archiving system, you can also set up rules for data deletion prevention as well as document editing prevention, both helping to maintain authority of the original document and ensure no data loss.  
  • Improved Performance – when your systems are no longer bogged down by old data they simply run faster. As a result, you will have shorter data backup times and speedier lookups, helping both your systems and your employees to work more efficiently. 


Types of Data Archiving Solutions

  1. Offline Data Storage
    Offline storage uses physical equipment such as tapes or disks. This storage solution reduced the risk of cyber attacks and can also help prevent big data modification. Storage costs and maintenance are typically lower as well. The disadvantage of offline data archiving is lengthier retrieval times and managing data can be much more difficult.
  2. Online Data Storage
    Online storage allows people in your organization to access files from anywhere and quicker than other storage options. It can also be easier to manage online data in an organized process. The disadvantage association with the type of archiving solution is that online data storage can be more vulnerable to cybercrime.
  3. Cloud Storage
    Private cloud storage can be a great way to protect against the high-risk online storage has. However, cloud storage can also be more costly than the other two options. You can also choose public clouds for lower operating costs but more risk. Amazon and Google both offer cloud integration storage solutions.
    Data Archiving is the right decision for your organization if you have a lot of important data that is not frequently used. Archiving this data puts it in a safe, monitorable place for when needed but prevents it from straining your systems and slowing your employees down.

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