How Do I Get My Data Back If My Cloud Provider Goes Bankrupt?

It’s a business continuity and disaster recovery planner’s worst nightmare: You wake up to the news that your cloud provider — the one that houses your critical data — has gone under. How do you get your data back?


Going out of business sign
The scenario isn’t entirely unheard of. In 2013, cloud provider Nirvanix announced it was closing its doors and told customers they had two weeks to migrate their data to another location. This announcement, however, should not have come as a surprise to customers. According to InfoWorld, Nirvanix had been informing its customers that it was having financial difficulties and at one point informed customers and partners that they could no longer upload data to the Nirvanix cloud.

Your provider going bankrupt should not come as a surprise to you, either. Before working with a cloud provider (or any other vendor who manages your critical data), you should assess the vendor’s financial situation as part of the due diligence process. If there are any red flags, proceed with caution.

No matter the financial situation of the provider, the contract you sign should have provisions around what happens with your data in the event of bankruptcy, default, etc. These provisions could include arrangements for transferring the data to another cloud environment or copying your data to external media and returning it to you.

If a provider won’t add a contract provision that protects you in the event of a bankruptcy, consider looking at alternate vendors.

For more guidance on choosing the right cloud provider, check out our post "11 Questions to Include in Your IT Vendor Due Diligence."

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