Hipskind’s QSafe: Protecting the Salvation Army from Data Disaster

In the past, Salvation Army IT Director Ron Shoults was kept up at night thinking about work and what was happening with his sensitive data. What if the data center fails? What if the tape backup is lost? Is everything safe and recoverable?

After starting work with Hipskind and using their QSafe solution for improved backup and security, he knows his company is in good hands.

“To me, [it’s great] to be able to go home at night and be able to sleep because I know the relationship we have with Hipskind is taking care of our data center as well as taking care of my organization as whole,” Shoults said.

Why does Shoults feel so at ease? It goes back to what QSafe provides for the Salvation Army: eliminating tape backups while providing comprehensive data backup and disaster recovery using up-to-date technology.

Jerry Scola, an account executive for Hipskind TSG, said that tape backup worked well for a while, but implementing QSafe has improved Salvation Army and other customers’ IT departments by getting them away from tape and into something more reliable.

“Tape backup had its time and place in history but that time and place is gone,” Scola said. “Right now, disk-to-disk backup is the fastest … but using QSafe, you can also replicate all that data off-site in such a way that, should an emergency arise at their primary location, we’d be able to stand them up in our cloud and get them up and running in a very short amount of time.”

What is QSafe?

So why does QSafe work so well for the Salvation Army and other Hipskind customers? To understand, we first must look at why tape backup is antiquated and should be updated.

Data loss is prone to happen in systems where information is stored physically only. Fires, floods, theft and other disasters can strike without warning and leave a company searching for answers and quick fixes. Salvation Army had its backup primarily on tapes and in the Dell arrays, which left company information in a treacherous situation. If the physical backup was destroyed, there would be no other way for their IT department to recover the data and they would be left in a bind. This could end up taking time, money and effort away from other interests of the company.

Moving away from storing data purely in their physical locations, companies have started looking toward cloud-based solutions, including Hipskind’s QSafe. QSafe is a comprehensive backup tool with the aim of taking the onus off of backup tapes and ushering in a more secure way of storing company files. This offering is built with Quantum’s line of DXi-Series products and their data deduplication technology. This can help reduce disk space requirements by approximately 90 percent (depending on the data) and substantially reduces costs.

Not only is this a more efficient route, but also the quicker way to go. Quantum’s broad line is used to deduplicate two terabytes of data in about 2.5 hours. Storage from Hipskind can go all the way up to 5 petabytes and provide 8.8 terabytes per hour of inline backup. Backup was once a process thought to be extremely time consuming; QSafe help makes it quick and easy.

Disk, tape and replication can be converged to make backup easier than ever before. With information backed up in different locations and formats, there is far less of a chance of losing something forever.

QSafe easily integrates into the existing backup infrastructure of your company, as it did with the Salvation Army, and will allow a company’s IT department to restore and manage data locally. Meanwhile, Hipskind can handle replication and disaster recovery, helping to put a figurative fortress around your business’ sensitive information.

Improvement is a necessity

While the Salvation Army takes backups seriously, many companies do not realize just how devastating data loss can be. Research organization Gartner found that 43 percent of companies that experienced a major loss of data were put out of business immediately. Another 51 percent shut down within two years of a major loss, which leaves a slim rate of survival for a smaller businesses and large losses looming for midsize and large companies.

How large could a loss be? A report from Pepperdine University said the average time it takes to recover data is about six hours. An employee recovering lost data will cost about $170 per hour, but often times companies will need to work outside of their own walls and hire an outside specialist. This could cost upwards of $340 per hour, thereby making a data loss incident very costly.

That doesn’t even take in to account productivity loss or how much money is lost when irreplaceable data flies out the door. Pepperdine said in 17 percent of incidents, data is lost that cannot be retrieved and may be either gone forever or needed to be re-created by an employee. The university said while this type of information is difficult to measure in value, they have roughly measured it to be around $10,000 for each MB lost. This means factoring in that 17 percent of incidents result in permanent data loss, the average cost of lost piece of data is $3,400.

Seeing success

Companies want results when implementing new tools for data backup and security. Since implementing Hipskind’s QSafe as part of their system, the Salvation Army has seen great success.

“QSafe is a critical part of our environment,” states Everett Jordan, Assistant Director of IT at the Salvation Army. “And it’s not only critical but it’s easy to work with. You don’t often see those two things hand-in-hand.”

Backing up important files is now essential, especially with the number of devices and employees who have access to sensitive information. IT departments need a solution, such as QSafe, to be able to sleep at night and have confidence during the day. Scola said it’s all in a days work for Hipskind, as they want to make sure companies they serve are in a good position if disaster does happen to strike.

“Hipskind wants to make sure that we are helping the Salvation Army, so that should a disaster strike them … that they can still get up and running, that they can still help those in need and they can still accomplish their mission,” Scola said.