Doyenz: the risks of using the cloud for business continuity come home to roost
Doyenz pulls out of the UK market for cloud-based data backup and disaster recovery, giving clients just days to find an alternative supplier.
While discussions about the risks of using cloud-based services as business continuity strategies have tended to focus on the issues of data security and protection, the second high profile shut-down of a business continuity focussed cloud service in six months highlights a third major risk: the supplier itself.
Earlier in the year Continuity Central reported on Google’s decision to close its Message Continuity service. Google gave most clients a reasonable timescale to find an alternative supplier, allowing existing Message Continuity contracts to run until their expiry date.
The Message Continuity shut-down served as an alarm bell to those in the market who were paying attention. That alarm bell began ringing even more loudly this week with the news that Doyenz, the US-based supplier of rCloud, a service which offers disaster recovery for physical and virtual servers, had decided to pull the plug on its UK operations. Clients were given not weeks or months but days to respond and to find a new supplier.
Caught in the cross-fire was Doyenz’s UK reseller Blue Solutions, which was left to pick up the pieces. Earlier this week Blue Solutions issued the following statement to customers:
“Blue Solutions have now received emailed confirmation that Doyenz will no longer be providing or supporting the rCloud backup and recovery service in the UK by the end of this week, 10th August 2012. We understand that Doyenz has emailed UK resellers and MSPs directly to notify them of the change.
“Doyenz’s removal of the rCloud service is surprising and disappointing at a time when Blue Solutions is seeing growing interest from the SMB channel wishing to support clients with cloud based backup and data recovery services.
“We understand that Doyenz will retain client data on its systems until only August 31st 2012. To access clients’ data, resellers must contact the Doyenz support team immediately via email: email@example.com [emails responded to within 3 business days].
“We believe [but this is unconfirmed to us] that Doyenz will offer our UK resellers using the rCloud service the option to back up data to its US cloud servers.
“The Blue Solutions team will also do our upmost to support resellers during this period of change and will aim to help resellers migrate data from the Doyenz servers to an alternative service.”
One competitor, Databarracks, acted quickly to provide help to those affected, offering support and assistance to Doyenz customers wishing to transfer to Databarracks’ cloud-based disaster recovery services.
“Both UK customers and channel partners are likely to be very concerned about the state of their backups and disaster recovery at the moment,” says Databarracks managing director, Peter Groucutt.
“We at Databarracks would like to extend an offer of support to all Doyenz’ UK customers. We are prepared to collect their data either from the data centre (if possible) or come to their sites to physically collect an initial seed of backups which we will then transport to our Tier 4 data centre. Time is obviously tight, but we do have a large team of engineers and we will do everything we can to make sure that no-one is left unprotected at the end of this month.”
“With many staff [at affected companies] likely to be away on holiday during August and bearing in mind the urgency of the situation, we want to make this process as simple as possible. We will offer our services free of charge to these businesses during August and for the following month of September too.”
“We have recently gone through an acquisition of the UK backup and disaster recovery provider SecuriData - so we have experience of taking on a large volume of new customers onto our systems in a very short space of time. Our support team operate 24/7/365 and we manage the backups for all of our customers which includes: setup, data collection and daily monitoring.”
The lessons for the future? The cloud undoubtedly brings many advantages as a business continuity or disaster recovery strategy; but supplier risk must be properly considered before entering into any contract. Caveat emptor and due diligence are the order of the day.
•Date: 10th August 2012 • UK/World •Type: Article • Topic: Cloud computing