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Anglicare Southern Queensland increases data security with Veeam

Anglicare Southern Queensland increases data security with Veeam

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Not-for-profit organizations are vulnerable to cyberattacks and ransomware, yet some don’t have adequate security built into their IT infrastructures, making it more difficult to detect malware and recover data. Anglicare Southern Queensland took a proactive approach to security and ransomware protection with Veeam.

Anglicare Southern Queensland began 150 years ago when five pioneering women founded the Female and Infants Refuge in Brisbane. From those humble beginnings Anglicare Southern Queensland expanded care services to all vulnerable people. Today the organization helps one in 30 Queenslanders.

Anglicare Southern Queensland is one of the state’s most trusted non-profits. Like all non-profits, Anglicare Southern Queensland worries about cyberattacks because they’re increasing in the sector.

“One of our top priorities is protecting the systems and data that support the care we provide to clients,” said Chris Williams, Technology Services Manager at Anglicare Southern Queensland. “We’re doing everything we can to protect against cyberattacks and ransomware, so one of the first things we did was replace our legacy backup solution with a mature, enterprise-grade solution.”

Williams said the legacy backup solution was slow, inefficient and unreliable. The backup window was 72 hours and backups were prone to failure. Recovery was slow too, taking hours or even days. Anglicare Southern Queensland was backing up to tape and wanted to switch to a cloud backup solution offering immutability, so Williams and his colleagues reviewed the solutions available, including Veeam.

“Veeam came out on top, especially with regard to security,” Williams said. “We considered a solution that would provide for immutable backups, but it requires proprietary backup repositories, and we didn’t want to be locked into storage when we already have suitable hardware. Instead, we wanted a hardware- and software-agnostic solution, so we considered products with those features, but they didn’t offer fast granular recovery like Veeam.”

Williams said immutability is just one part of the story. Testing is critical too.

“Immutable backups are great, but they’re pointless if the data you restore is corrupted. Testing backups to verify their recoverability and scanning for malware before recovering data are just as important. Veeam delivers on all these points and more, including protection for our historical data as we transitioned to Microsoft Office 365.”

The Veeam solution

Anglicare Southern Queensland chose Veeam Availability Suite and Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 to boost ransomware protection and data security. Veeam provides immutable backup copies in Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) and automated testing for secure restore. It also supports data retention and recovery compliance in the Royal Commissions Act and delivers complete protection, access and control of Office 365 data.

“There’s nothing more important than protecting the systems and data that enable our organization to care for clients at every stage in their life’s journey,” Williams said. “That’s why we chose Veeam. It’s a mature, enterprise-grade solution that delivers on security and ransomware protection.”

Veeam protects more than 100 TBs of data in several critical IT systems: Procura for client relationship management, AutumnCare for electronic health record management and PeoplePoint for human resources management.

Veeam backs up 170 virtual machines and 12 physical machines on-premises and sends backup copies to Amazon S3 for immutability and to Azure for redundancy. Veeam also sends backup copies to Amazon S3 Glacier Deep Archive (AWS S3 Glacier Deep Archive) for indefinite retention.

“Veeam is fast, efficient and easy to use,” Williams said. “Our backup window decreased by 89% (from three days to eight hours), but what impresses us most is Veeam DataLabs for backup testing and security.”

DataLabs enable Anglicare Southern Queensland to create isolated virtual labs outside of the production environment to test the recoverability of backups and scan for malware (Secure Restore) before recovering data. DataLabs also offers On-Demand Sandbox to test software patches and updates before deploying them.

“We use On-Demand Sandbox to test SQL updates,” Williams said. “The database is rather large at 1 TB, so what used to take days to test updates now takes a few hours with Veeam.”

Williams said recovery is faster too, taking minutes rather than hours or days.

“Veeam provides peace of mind across the board, but we notice it the most often when we have to recover something to a specific point in time. Veeam lets us drill down to a single item so easily. When one of my colleagues told me that Teams files could end up lost if you saved a file wrong and overrode the original files, I said ‘No worries, we have Veeam.’”

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