September 12, 2011

This is an exclusive interview by (BR) - Your source for online backup news and reviews


Phone, US: 1-888-738-8011
Phone, UK: 0-800-180-4425
Phone, Int’l +44 20 7331 430
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Customer Care:

with Mr. Saaher Muzafer, Chief Sales Officer at SecurStore Online Backup

Photo: Saaher Muzafer

Company History and Operation

1/BR: Please give us some background information about your company, such as how it was founded, by whom, how long have you been around, where your headquarters are, how many branch offices you have or you will have, etc.

SecurStore was formed in 1991 initially offering IT support services, we will be celebrating our 20th anniversary later this year. Our Head Office is in London, just near Heathrow Airport which gives us great national and international access to our global customers. We offer Cloud Backup and Cloud Storage services, our focus is on providing an enterprise level technology with personalized support all under strict security and compliance protocols. This gives the peace of mind to customers knowing that they are getting great value with feature rich solutions that cater for their needs all in a sustainable manner. We have customers in all sectors including Financial, Legal, Retail, Media, Manufacturing and Engineering to name but a few.

2/BR: Tell us about your day to day job, and its challenges and successes

Daily we speak to customers about our Cloud Service Solutions, we do many customers setups who have a host of complex IT environments in various locations. The main challenge is to implement these setups quickly and efficiently so that customers don’t have any downtime. We are always confident of delivering this as our solution can support all types of operating systems and applications successfully using advanced encryption. Successes come down to knowing we have a spread of customers across all sectors in many geographic locations so for any future prospect we can pass on our expertise and advise them on a backup strategy to suit their needs.

3/BR: Is your customer base primarily in Canada or the US, or is there a significant international presence as well?

Our customer base is global, we are backing up sites in many continents and far reach territories which showcase the true reach of who we can provide a service for without any issues, in simple terms it doesn’t matter where the location is, we can protect customers data from anywhere.

4/BR: Can you tell us about your servers, please? Where they are located, how many backups you perform, if server room is controlled for humidity, temperature, and whether there is backup power?

Our data is stored in the UK and US. In addition we can easily deploy to any country and have local DC facilities at any time.

Company Positioning

5/BR: What makes your company and its service different from others?

Not only does SecurStore offer, a market leading technology which has been recognized for Cloud Backup, but we are also PcPro recommended, have ISO 27001 certification and encompass 3 tiers of offsite Cloud Backup and Storage. In addition, our Cloud Storage platform is housed in 100% Green Carbon Free Data Centre.

6/BR: What have been your greatest challenges so far and what do you see these challenges are / will be at the present time / in the coming years? How do you plan to overcome those challenges?

Our biggest challenges have been to always be innovative and forward thinking to look at how we can sustain costs for customers data growth so that it fits in with their annual budgets. This has to be done without jeopardizing the service or quality of the offering in hand. Data is always going to grow so we need to be proactive and help customers moving forward. A few years ago we launched our 2nd tier of backup which proved a huge benefit and now we have a 3rd offsite tier with the added bonus of data being stored in a true green data centre for our Cloud Storage tier. Not only does this have the added value of keeping costs down but has the bonus of meeting any regulatory government targets in reducing carbon footprint and emissions.

7/BR: And what are your biggest accomplishments so far?

Our biggest accomplishments are our customers, that is helping them save whilst also backing up their data. We value them, therefore, work extremely hard 24/7 to make sure they know their data is being protected safely and securely. We get inundated daily from prospects calling who have been suffering from their backups, either their existing solution doesn’t work, or they have been caught out by escalating costs or hidden fees which they never knew about. Trust is an important factor in this industry, we just tell it as it is; therefore, it’s nice to help when required.


8/BR: What are your top selling account packages, and why are they enjoying so much success?

We offer Cloud Backup and Cloud Storage solutions. We try to make our offering simple to understand right from the initial enquiry through to setup. Keeping customers informed of every aspect of the process is crucial plus being clear on what’s being offered and any associated costs.

9/BR: Do you charge by account or by PC? Do you offer unlimited backup and restore?

No, this isn’t a pay per user, desktop, server, or licence model. Customers only pay for what they store after compression, de-duplication and delta blocking have occurred on their data, all else is included.


10/BR: One of the biggest concerns of online backup users is data security and privacy. How have you addressed those issues?

All backup data transmitted is encrypted using FIPS-240-2 Certified encryption (AES 128, AES 192 or AES 256). This means that even by gaining access to the data stream, the data will be in processed (delta, common file elimination), compressed (zlib or lzop) and encrypted (strong encryption) format. Customers create their own keys and all encryption/decryption is done at the customers site, therefore there can be no 3rd party access to the data. The solution itself is compliant with most of the widely known Standards, Acts and Directives such as Sarbanes Oxley, Data Protection Act, HIPAA and many more ensuring security and compliance are at the forefront of this technology.

11/BR: How does your proprietary technology compare to the proprietary technology of your main competitors?

Our solution is agentless using Asigra technology, therefore you don’t need to install the software on every machine on our Cloud Backup platform. It sees everything connected to the main server that it is installed on and customers can then co-ordinate from that single machine what they want to backup. Customers can also keep a local copy of their data onsite for added DR, i.e. data can be recovered from any local NAS device for example if their server goes down. Servers, desktops, laptops, tablets and handheld devices are also supported.

12/BR: What are the key competing technologies in the online backup industry and what are some of the advantages you offer over the competition?

Speaking on ourselves, we offer agentless backup across a multi-tier storage model, designed to help the customer in mind with sustainability of having an offsite solution.

13/BR: Does your solution take into consideration compatibility across the major platforms, mobility, flexibility and constant access to data?

Yes, it supports Windows, Mac, Linux, VMware, Hyper-V, SQL, Oracle, Exchange, Lotus, GroupWise and much more. Customers always have access to their data and can add, modify, delete backup sets at any time. We let them control their own backup strategy and not us telling them what to do. Also we can support laptop users, single offices, multi offices in any geographic location. For larger enterprises we can look at building their own backup systems either via the Private or Hybrid Cloud route.


14/BR: How has the online backup business evolved in the past few years, and how do you see it further evolving?

We are currently in the online backup era and are transitioning into Cloud Services including the likes of Cloud Backup and Storage. There are many challenges with tape based backups as most of this technology or methodologies used is out dated. The focus is on recovery and having a good DR plan should for example something happen to the office or information gets lost or stolen. Therefore having data backed up and stored offsite is much more secure in the event of a disaster.

15/BR: Whom do you consider your main competitors? And Why?

Competitors are tapes, what we are emphasizing is the need to keep data securely therefore can be retrievable as and when needed. Eliminating human error, making this automated to free up employee time is also crucial especially in this marketplace.

16/BR: Large companies like Microsoft and Google have started to offer online storage solutions. Do you fear them? How can you compete with such formidable adversaries?

It is not about having fear with any company no matter what size they are. Customers have the choice and will make their own decisions after through due-diligence, what we try and do is to present our offering in a concise manner and more or less educate the customer in what we can do to help and benefit them.

17/BR: There has been a great deal of M&A activity in the industry during the last few years. What is your strategy?

It is all about scalability, we are careful in what we do and how we invest and have proved over the years how good we are on this. Providing customers with first class solutions and support is our primary objective not quick revenue growth. We won’t run before we can walk, yes there has been a lot of movement on acquisitions, however, equally how many companies have gone bust or breached security standards because they couldn’t cope with what they had. We are always open to acquisition, however, due to our excellent reputation in the industry, we will never rush into this and our loyal customer base appreciate that.

18/BR: In the future, say five years from now, do you think the cost of online storage will remain as it is today, or will it go significantly cheaper? For example, to back up a 1 GB file?

The costs have more or less leveraged out now, but it’s not all about that. In this instance, we are talking about backing up valuable and sensitive information for companies, therefore, the appropriate measures need to be in place. Secure data centre facilities, technology that can support various systems, centralized management, compliance, ensuring security standards are met, all these are important and of course there is a cost to it. We try and help customers by having a unique multi-tiered model which provides long term sustainability without compromising on service.

19/BR: Many have exited the online backup and storage business, including, Xdrive, Yahoo! Briefcase, MediaMax (Streamload), OmniDrive, Zoogmo, and many others. Do you have any comment on that?

We focus on our own solution and the benefits it can provide, what we do know is that we can support any type of customer no matter where they are located and whatever infrastructure they have.

20/BR: Any advice for IT companies planning to launch an online data backup and storage business?

Speak to SecurStore, we will make it more easier and profitable for you from Day 1 without any investment needed.

21/BR: Cloud computing (or SaaS) isn’t yet a mainstream technology. How are you educating potential customers of its benefits?

We regularly have publications, articles and blogs which is on our website and continually updated. Lots of companies use onsite backups, but what happens if an office catches on fire, data will be lost forever. Can anyone put a price on this? We also have valuable expertise spanning many years on backup so we are happy to pass this knowledge on to customers.

22/BR: How can a file sharing and document collaboration solutions like your product help increase the productivity of a mobile workforce?

We don’t offer a file sharing solution, but we do have Cloud Storage as part of our service portfolio. This is for customers who have TB’s of old redundant data that want to store offsite at low cost utilizing a 100% carbon free data centre. Dual benefits include helping the environment from a social responsibility perspective and also fitting in with long term budgets. Effectively this is our third offsite tier whilst our Cloud Backup service uses two tiers.

23/BR: Your solution is built specifically for small businesses, for mobile professionals and virtual teams. What are the main advantages of your service compared to the raft of other document sharing services on the market?

Our solution is for the corporate and enterprise market no matter what they have in place, we offer a free 30 day trial so customers are more than welcome to try out our service at any time.

Final Comment

24/BR: Do you have any thing you would like to add?

The market is definitely going to Cloud based solutions, so I would advise prospects looking at these services to do through research and technical evaluations to ensure the right product is chosen.


We sincerely thank Saaher Muzafer for this interview opportunity.

© 2011 –

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