Nick Keene


By Nick Keene, Synapsys Presales Engineer

Now and again something pops up from the pre-COVID 19 world to remind us about things that were, and still are, important, despite our understandable preoccupation with the health crisis. The Protection of Personal Information Act (POPIA) is one of those. Last week the South African government announced the commencement of further sections of the act, starting today and coming into effect in a year’s time.

Of course you should be protecting your customers’ personal identification information as a matter of course. It’s the right thing to do, and trust is key to any relationship. In addition, ransomware attacks are on the rise and target personal information to use in phishing scams and other cyber crime, and increasingly simply lock companies out of their valuable data until a ransom is paid.

This got me thinking about two related features of Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud that can help MSPs ensure their customers remain POPIA compliant.

The first is the new data protection map capability of Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud (you’ll find it on the dashboard). The data protection map feature scans the customer’s environment and lets you know which files are not backed up or protected. This allows you to pre-emptively alert customers about these gaps and to work with them to ensure everything is protected so that they remain compliant, and don’t get a nasty surprise in the event of a recovery. (see image below left)

A related functionality, the real-time protection of important documents through continuous data protection capabilities (found in the data protection plan tab on the dashboard) means that changes to critical applications (including custom applications), files or folders are saved immediately even between backups. A nice nuance here is that you can set continuous data protection to apply to specific applications (for instance, all .xls and .xlsx documents).

As well as ensuring zero RTO, this means that machine-wide backups can be run less frequently, using less bandwidth and with fewer performance impacts. It also means that the backup can be a true single repository of all personal identification information, irrespective of its origin. It’s the best of all worlds, and peace of mind that critical documents and information are immediately backed up and protected. (see image below right)

These are two quite granular examples of how Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud can support POPIA (and other legislation) compliance by improving the backup, storage and recovery of data.

To get started offering Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud to your customers:

Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud is now fully deployed to all Acronis data centres around the world. Your reseller partner, or MSP, will need to activate Cyber Protect Cloud for you. From there you can easily activate it for all your customers in your management console.

If you need support, in the first instance, contact your service provider or partner and if necessary they will escalate the matter. In addition, to help service providers to support their customers, Acronis offers free tier one support training.

Remember that Acronis is offering zero-rated usage on the new product until the end of July 2020, so now is a good time to sign up.  Please get in touch to do so: here are our contact details, and we promise we reply to the web chat very quickly during office hours.

To find an MSP that offers Acronis Cyber Protect, drop us a line here and we’ll connect you.

Written for publication on the Synapsys website on 1 July 2020