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Geographically Distributed Backups for Enhanced Data Protection

We are excited to announce that as of this month, we have deployed a system for geographically distributed backups, which minimizes the risk of data loss and аllows for fast data recovery even in case of a serious incident that may affect a whole data center. 

Backups are stored in a different physical data center from the one hosting the live account

As of this month, we started backing up accounts in a data center different from the one hosting the live account as follows: 

  • Iowa, US servers are backed up on machines in Virginia, US
  • Virginia, US servers are backed up on machines in Ohio, US
  • California, US servers are backed up on machines in Oregon, US
  • Texas, US servers are backed up on machines in Southern Carolina, US
  • London, UK servers are backed up in Eemshaven, NL
  • Frankfurt, DE servers are backed up in Eemshaven, NL
  • Madrid, ES servers are backed up in Eemshaven, NL
  • Eemshaven, NL servers are backed up in Frankfurt, DE 
  • Sydney, AU servers are backed up in Singapore, SG
  • Paris, FR servers are backed up in Madrid, ES

This service is not available for accounts hosted in Singapore for now. These accounts are backed up on different servers within the Singapore facility.

Enhanced data protection

Data storage and safety is a key component of our service and there are multiple risk factors and threats that we keep in mind when coming up with data security solutions. The most common ones are human errors, hardware failure, and hacks. For those occasions, we rely on our daily backups stored on different servers independently from the live account. But then, there are the less likely, yet more damaging risks such as fire, power outage, or a natural disaster that may shut down a whole data center facility. Hosting the backups in a different location means we improve the chances of saving your data and putting it back online even in case of such a serious incident.

Faster service restore

Now imagine your website goes offline due to a massive power outage and the ETA is unknown, which most often means hours of downtime. Or, a hurricane completely destroyed the facility and all servers are lost beyond recovery. That was a very real threat we experienced with Katrina hurricane back in 2005 and is a growing risk in some areas given the climate change and the growing number of natural disasters all over the world. Or, maybe a fire burns the datacenter and a lot, if not all, servers are hurt. That one happened quite recently to a third-party data center in France.

Thanks to our new system, we now have you covered since we have your data safely backed up not more than 24 hours ago in a different data center. In case of an incident, we would be able to put your website back online in the new location that is fully operational.

Thus the distributed backups not only save your data but allow us to restore service in the new DC much faster than any optimistic ETA would forecast for restoring in the original DC.

The distributed backup strategy has been something we have considered for a long time. However, it became practically possible once we started to use the Google Cloud infrastructure. The use of one and the same provider for all our geographical locations, with a super fast interrelatedness between its different data centers and a wide network of facilities around the world, allowed us to distribute data across regions, countries, and continents in a way that was not possible before.

We have to recognize the fact that before switching to Google Cloud infrastructure that strategy for distributed backups was not possible in such a sophisticated way. Google Cloud has given us easy access to all their worldwide facilities, including networking capacity and that generated various new possibilities to distribute data across regions, countries, and continents.

Same level of data privacy

Our Privacy Policy and DPA continue to apply in light of our new geographically distributed backups. Our clients’ data will be protected in the same way as before, as promised, and under our DPA.

While we are hopeful that no natural forces will affect any data centers, our team prefers to be prepared for the worst and provide our clients with reassurance for their websites.

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author avatar

Hristo Pandjarov

WordPress Innovations Director

Enthusiastic about all Open Source applications you can think of, but mostly about WordPress. Add a pinch of love for web design, new technologies, search engine optimisation and you are pretty much there!

Comments ( 4 )

author avatar

Bill

May 23, 2023

I’m surprised to learn that with your size you do not have sync-data redundancy for failover at an alternate location rather than having to restore from backup. What is the demonstrated recovery time capability to recover at an alternate location should there be a catastrophic failure at the Los Angeles data center? Our data loss is 24hrs plus at least how long it takes you to recover. Thanks

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author avatar

Gabriela Andonova Siteground Team

May 29, 2023

Thanks for the question, Bill. All data centers we use have top-level critical components redundancy. In case of a massive server crash, or power outage for a long period of time or a natural disaster, we as your host are responsible to ensure we can restore your data and minimize the downtime. And thanks to our sophisticated backup system, we are able to migrate TBs of data in just a few hours as it allows simultaneous restores from multiple backup instances to multiple production servers. Moreover, we can power up your website on a server that is located in a different country or continent if that is the fastest way to bring it back online.

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author avatar

Olga

May 07, 2024

I see you do a lot of things regarding restoring backups and backing up critical top-level components. However, my concern is more about the security of these open source applications that you use on different servers. Seeing that you are using a MySQL database to store your backups - an open source relational database management system - I'm wondering how safe it is for a business to store all of its data in such a public system. Thank you.

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author avatar

Lina Asenova Siteground Team

May 08, 2024

Hey there, MySQL is widely used and trusted for its reliability and security features. We implement robust security measures to protect the data stored in MySQL databases, including regular updates, strict access controls, and secure backup procedures. Additionally, our clients’ data is isolated and is not publicly accessible. If you have any other questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out directly to our support team by following the steps outlined in the article: stgrnd.co/contactus. We are available 24/7 and would be happy to help.

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