Every business person knows you must archive important paper records your business generates or receives. Contracts, documents, HR information – all of this paper must be properly stored and archived and be available for recall, when needed. If you are in a regulated industry, the archiving and safe storage of your documents is even more critical. Email, an increasingly important form of communication is just as important to archive and enable quick retrieval as well. Large “companies” such as the US Government (White House), Morgan Stanley and others have been in the news from time to time with stories of not being able to retrieve email archives for the courts.
Your small business, might have 5 or 50 employees compared to the thousands of a larger company, but email archiving is just as important. It may be even more important as you have more to lose if you can’t produce email records for a court or just for a long time client.
Both Jatheon and LiveOffice provide email archiving solutions and we have some questions answered from them below.
Kieron Dowling, President and CEO of Jaytheon Technologies
Is there no way to archive email in Exchange – out of the box? If so, what are the options and why is a third party option like Jatheon even needed?
Exchange does not have the ability to archive. The benefit of a third party archive like Jatheon’s solution is that it doesn’t put any resources on exchange. Some companies frequently limit the size of user’s mailboxes to optimize exchange server performance. Many times this forces users to waste time cleaning out their mailboxes. Other companies allow larger mailbox sizes which, at times, can severely affect the efficiency of the exchange server. A third party archive automatically stores content in the archive, where it is accessible to users without placing any unnecessary load on exchange.
How long does it take to implement Jatheon’s solution?
Under 1 hour.
How does email archiving work with backup and restoration – or is it one and the same?
Performing a backup of a company’s computer data is not the same as creating an archive. In order to comply with most regulations, email and their attachments must be stored in their original formats, with no one having the ability to alter content. This means that unlike a backup, which is usually made at the end of each day and designed to restore email servers after a problem, the archive is created at the front end, before messages reach the end user’s computer, and stored in n non-rewritable format.
When choosing an email archiving solution, and there are indeed many options, what are some top level issues that should be considered?
When choosing an email archiving solution a company should consider simplicity – both from a deployment perspective and a user perspective. Ideally archiving systems should not have dependencies on Exchange and should be non-intrusive to the network. A company should also consider ease of use – a user friendly system that is intuitive and simple to operate.
What about archiving for other, non-Exchange email solutions ?
While many e-mail archiving solutions are designed to work with unique and specific messaging platforms the Jatheon solution works with all major e-mail platforms such as Exchange, Lotus Notes, Novell Groupwise, Kerio, and Scalix.
Matt Smith, President and Founder, LiveOffice
How does this technology work for those who already host their email with an ISP using POP or IMAP or those using hosted Exchange?
LiveOffice Mail Archive works with on-premise or hosted Exchange via Exchange’s built-in journaling feature.
Is this meant for an administrator to manage or for individuals? If individuals, could it be a regulatory issue if it’s not protected or secure enough?
Mail Archive is extremely easy to use and offers 3 levels of access:
Administrator: SMBs can designate one person in their organization that is the system administrator. In many organizations, the Administrator is typically a member of the IT staff, but in some cases, it can also be the company owner.
Reviewer: SMBs can have any number of reviewers. The Administrator is able to grant them access to review email accounts as needed. For example, the head of HR may be conducting an internal investigation about employee misconduct and would therefore need to review messages involved in the investigation. The Administrator would be able to grant the HR person access to those messages only – without giving him/her carte blanche access to the entire archive of stored messages.
End User: Mail Archive provides Personal Archive Access for end users to their individual archive. This is a HUGE productivity enhancer for SMBs because it enables employees to quickly search and find messages that may no longer reside in their inbox or on the company mail server, without having to contact IT for help. As an example, I could be looking for a contract that was sent to me 3 years ago, but after searching Outlook, I’m not able to locate it. But now I have Mail Archive’s Personal Archive Access and I all I have to do is login to my personal archive, enter the search criteria that and quickly locate the message in a matter of seconds.
In terms of regulatory issues, all messages stored in the archive are unalterable. Since they are captured via journaling, all messages sent and received are captured, indexed and stored in the tamper-proof archive before they are received by the recipient. This is a very good thing since it enables organizations to prove the authenticity of messages in the event of litigation (something that courts are very intent upon when it comes to electronically stored information, commonly known as ESI). In terms of security, having served financial services companies for the last decade, we take system security very seriously.
Why is “archiving” so important? If one’s email is hosted by an ISP isn’t it already backed up? Also, a related question: is there a difference between backup and archiving?
Many organizations confuse email backup with email archiving. Here’s a simple way to understand the difference. Backups are for disaster recovery, while archives are for retention and discovery. SMBs should double check with their ISP to make sure that their email is backed up, but they should also keep in mind that a backup doesn’t guarantee rapid access to an old message – an archive does.
Backups were never really intended to meet regulatory requirements and other compliance needs. They most effectively serve as a short-term insurance policy to facilitate disaster recovery (assuming they are kept offsite).
Archiving, on the other hand, is specifically designed to quickly and easily meet regulatory requirements and other compliance needs. In addition, archiving serves another important role – it can reduce the strain on your in-house email servers. With growing email volumes and skyrocketing storage costs, email archiving can:
– Reduce the size of your email stores
– Reduce your backup windows
– Reduce the amount of IT budget earmarked for storage
For most modern organizations, the operational, legal and compliance challenges of email necessitate going beyond simple backups. The table below demonstrates how email archiving goes beyond simple backups in terms of mailbox management, compliance and legal discovery.
We have a convenient table that breaks down the difference here: http://www.liveoffice.com/archiving/email-archiving-vs-backup.asp
What role does privacy play? If all emails I send and received are archived, is there a way to delete that “bad” email I might have sent last week and I want no one to ever see?
When it comes to workplace email, the employer owns that data so there really is no “privacy” for employees. Employers should always include a clearly stated email policy in the employee handbook so that employees understand that any communications taking place on work email are subject to search by the employer without the employee’s permission. Ultimately, employers are liable for what their employees write in email.
Email is at the very least a two-way communication (if not multi-directional) so there’s no such thing as deleting a “bad” email because someone else will always have a copy of it. The beauty of an email archive is that it protects messages from tampering so that SMBs are able to prove the authenticity of messages, should it ever come into question.
Is this new LiveOffice solution for the small business owners to implement or more for their local IT person or LiveOffice techs to do?
Mail Archive is absolutely meant for small business owners to implement – and we already have thousands of SMBs that have deployed our email archiving solutions. Our specially trained client services team works with each organization to ensure a smooth and rapid implementation process. Since Mail Archive is delivered via the SaaS model, it takes just a few days to deploy the system and requires very little effort from the SMB. Plus, we take care of everything, including providing unlimited training and support as well as performing all ongoing system maintenance and updates.
Organizations with as few as 25 mailboxes are looking for a solution to help them with mailbox management and e-discovery and that has led them to Mail Archive. Many of these clients are also choosing to deploy our Hosted Exchange 2007 with Mail Archive so that they have “Unlimited Mailbox” capabilities, which frees them from the limitations of mailbox quotas and the liability caused by the proliferation of PST files. Plus, this bundled offering enhances employee and operational productivity by enabling end users to search and access their personal archive of old emails and attachments at any time, even if the messages are no longer in their inbox or stored on the company mail server.
Following are some useful tips on how SMBs can select a hosted archiving solution that is right for them:
- Ask the vendor for references – your archiving vendor is going to be handling your mission critical email data and you want to make sure they are experienced with a good track record
- Make sure to ask for unlimited storage and retention so that you have a predictable monthly cost (vs. being charged for storage space/usage each month)
- Verify with the vendor that you own and control the data stored in the archive – you should be able to specify how long the data is stored for as well as when and/or if it gets purged.