Amazon's cloud arm debuts data-backup service: 5 things to know

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Amazon Web Services will allow customers to back up their data across cloud and on-premise environments through a new service dubbed AWS Backup.

Five things to know:

1. AWS Backup provides customers with a centralized service to configure and audit the resources they back up, including options for automated data backups and an option to monitor recent backups. The service enables customers to manage backups across AWS, such as setting how frequently backups are created and how long they are stored.

2. AWS Backup is now available to support storage volumes, databases and file systems and is integrated with Amazon DynamoDB, Amazon Elastic Block Store, Amazon Elastic File System, Amazon Relational Database Service and AWS Storage Gateway. AWS said it plans to support additional services in the future and noted customers can back up on-premise application data through AWS Storage Gateway.

3. One healthcare organization already using AWS Backup is Smile Brands, a dental support organization. George Suda, senior vice president and CIO of Smile Brands, said in a news release that AWS Backup helps the company meet regulatory compliance requirements under HIPAA.

"We manage thousands of AWS resources, such as storage volumes and databases, and all of them must meet compliance according to HIPAA backup requirements," he said. "With AWS Backup's centralized backup console, we will be able to define a backup policy that meets our compliance requirements and apply the same policy to all our AWS resources across the various AWS services that we use."

4. Media reports began speculating AWS would roll out new data-backup capabilities after Amazon acquired Israeli disaster-recovery startup CloudEndure. CloudEndure, which offers data backup and cloud migration services to help businesses move their data to the cloud, was not mentioned in Amazon's announcement of the AWS Backup service.

5. Data backups have proved particularly useful in the wake of recent high-profile cyberattacks. During the worldwide WannaCry ransomware attack in 2017, many organizations struggled to maintain operations because they couldn't access — or didn't have — backup data.

To learn more about AWS Backup, click here.

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