There are many reasons for email archiving. These include regulatory compliance, e-discovery, and the management of storage resources.
Email is by far the most common form of business communication; you can analyse a business by looking at the email that flows to and from it.
Over recent years email has become the subject of ever increasing amounts regulatory compliance, and for many organisations there is little choice but to ensure that there exists a central data repository of email and its attachments which is both secure and searchable.
E-discovery is the retrieval of data in response to a legal request, regulatory compliance or any corporate requirement, and it is a frequent necessity for IT departments. If there is not an adequate searchable archive system, the task can be very daunting, requiring huge amounts of effort and expense. Sometimes there are legal requirements on the time allowed for complying with an e-discovery request, and organisations can face fines if they fail to deliver on time. There are also rules on how long email must be retained, and these vary depending on the business sector, and the amount of storage needed for emails grows on a daily basis. By archiving data, email server efficiency can be improved considerably.
So what are the email archiving solutions?
The first is an in-house archive. This requires investment in hardware, storage, and software. Usually a dedicated server is required that makes a copy of emails and stores the copies in an archive. Generally software is installed on all employeesâ?? computers to enable search and retrieval.
The perceived advantage of an in-house archive is control and security along with infrastructure integration. However it is expensive to set up and maintain, requiring high levels of IT skills. Also, for complete integrity, ideally duplicate systems should be deployed in alternative locations.
The alternative to an in-house archive is a cloud-based archive from a third party. Here, advantages include the freeing up of IT resources, reduced investment in hardware and software, and the convenience of not having to maintain an archiving system.
One of the perceived problems with remote cloud-based archiving solutions is security. It is understandable that many organisations are concerned that they would lose control of their critical data, thus it is essential to ensure that the third party is able to offer a truly resilient system distributed over various graphical locations, that all email stored is encrypted, and that the system is tamper proof. The best way of achieving this is by carrying out a security audit on the archive provider or looking for standards such as ISO27001.
The need to archive email is clear, and the difficulties of doing this in house are apparent. For most organisations cloud-based third party solutions are the only realistic way forward.
This is a guest post by Adam a new Londoner, who has interests in recruitment, all things techy, a passion for travel and a love of fashion. He blogs about recruitment, travel and IT/technology as well as latest trends in mens and womens fashion. If you want Adam to write you specific content, feel free to message me on Twitter (@NewburyNewbie).
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