Google Drive is fantastic for collaboration, but it’s not business backup. Yet, as adoption of Google’s G-Suite—including “free” access to Google Drive—accelerates, we’re seeing a troubling trend: Businesses dangerously substituting Google Drive as a “good enough” stand-in for true business backup.
Google Drive Isn’t Designed for Data Protection and Recovery
Google Drive is great for syncing and sharing documents across devices and users. It should be—it’s designed for sharing and collaboration. But sharing is an entirely different design goal than true business backup—and that fundamental flaw leaves vulnerable gaps when you try to shoehorn Google Drive into the role of backup.
Here are five ways Google Drive fails your business as a stand-in for backup:
- Google Drive puts the burden on your users. Files don’t just appear in Google Drive. Your users have to manually select and upload each file for sharing or saving. When used as backup, this puts a huge burden on your users. You’re asking them to stop what they’re doing, several times each day, to manually back up every new file they’ve created. Moreover, you’re asking them to care enough to actually do it. And we all know how unpredictable users can be. If they forget—or simply decide not to—then significant portions of your data are left unprotected and unrecoverable.
- Google Drive doesn’t cover all your data. Users want to back up all their files. But they only want to share some of them. In fact, some of users’ most valuable files are those they hold most closely—and are reluctant to share. Anything they choose not to manually share is not backed up and can’t be recovered in a data loss incident.
- Google Drive makes user error everyone’s problem. Google Drive is focused on moving work forward—not going back. If a user accidentally deletes a file and doesn’t realize it in time, it’s lost forever. Worse, that deleted file is now gone from everyone’s Google Drive.
- Google Drive spreads ransomware. Malware and ransomware attacks continue to increase—and Google Drive only makes it worse. If one user makes an honest mistake and “clicks the link,” an infected file can be automatically synced to a shared drive. Other users download it and suddenly an isolated incident blows up into an enterprise-wide disaster.
- Google Drive can’t stop insider threat. Because it’s designed for easy sharing and collaboration, Google Drive doesn’t prioritize security and control. It’s hard to stop malicious users from stealing data or intentionally deleting files. And IT has little or no visibility beyond the shared drive: no alert if a user downloads a file, and no way to know what users are doing with the files living exclusively on their endpoint devices.
The truth is that Google Drive isn’t all bad. It’s just bad for backup. Read more about the fundamental flaws of using file-sharing products as backup—and see the key backup functionality you need to protect all your data and guarantee fast recovery.