Are your critical applications delivered through the cloud?

SES continues to strive and deliver the best possible service to all of our current and prospective clients. According to a recent survey, many software users are still not aware of the full benefits of using a SaaS / cloud platform, but more importantly on the flip side of the coin, the risks associated.

The use of cloud platforms to deliver critical applications is continuing to grow as consumers increasingly demand instant access to their applications and on demand fulfillment from anywhere in the world.

This transition away from installed applications towards the cloud creates convenience for the licensees using them and offers a cost effective alternative to standard on-premise applications.

Whilst cloud applications have significant advantages over on-premise applications, some significant business continuity questions you need to be asking include:

• What will happen if my vendor goes into administration?

• Where is my data held?

• How many copies of your data are held and how frequently are they backed up?

• What happens if the IP is transferred?

• Do I need to access the source code?

• If the vendor is no longer around, how do I get everything back up and running?

Data is Gold

Removing infrastructure costs also means moving where your data is stored. Unlike traditional on-premise applications where the users data is held on-site, applications delivered through the cloud can often have critical data stored with the software vendor or with hosted service providers on accounts owned by your software vendor.

In both these instances, should the software vendor cease to operate, this can and has left organisations unable to access their information. Generally speaking when assessing risks, being able to access your data is far more important to organisations than access to the application source code and being unable to access it can be disastrous.

SES protect numerous organisations with hassle free Escrow coverage based on a high frequency of SFTP deposits to ensure the latest version of data is held on behalf of our clients. Given the dynamic nature of hosted applications and data generation, only a high frequency of deposits can prevent Escrow coverage from becoming obsolete.

Even if Escrow is not a solution being utilised we always advise on safeguarding access to critical data through an agreed back-up schedule with the software vendor or Licensee ownership of accounts with hosted service providers being used to deliver applications.

Emergency Deposits Vs Frequent Depositing

When setting up an Escrow agreement to protect hosted applications, some Software Escrow Agents offer a monitoring service with an emergency deposit of data in the event of software vendor failure.

SES proudly do not offer this method as we believe this is not best practice when used as part of an annual deposit (or low number of deposits) Escrow strategy. With dynamic applications data deposits can become out-dated very quickly. Should the request for an emergency deposit be unsuccessful, this will leave Licensees with a release of data that is no longer relevant and invalidate the intended protections of the Escrow.

Ideally all Escrow protections should be proven and tested (as far as is reasonable to do so) to ensure organisations are confident in the effectiveness of their business continuity planning.

As standard SES offer a consistent and frequent deposit strategy that ensures the material in Escrow is updated in line with your use of the application. Our unlimited SFTP depositing facility enables your software vendor to easily upload backups of your application data as frequently as necessary. This ensures that in the event of a release you are certain to receive an accurate copy of your applications source code and data, enabling you to effectively rebuild your application.

If your business uses critical applications which are hosted in the cloud and would like to find out more about how a bespoke SaaS solution can protect your business, please use the form below to get in touch and one of our specialists will get back to you within one business day.

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