Dell’s PowerProtect Cyber Recovery and CyberSense heading into the cloud

Dell has made its PowerProtect Cyber Recovery for Microsoft Azure generally available, and a look at Dell’s other cyber recovery products indicates the direction of its roadmap is toward other public clouds.

Update: Dell comment added to end of penultimate paragraph. Jim McGann quote in last paragraph re CyberSense for AWS availability timing corrected. 12 July 2022.

Backed up data bits are stored in PowerProtect DD (Data Domain) or DD VE (Virtual Edition) commodity storage drive hardware with Dell’s Cyber Recovery Vault and PowerProtect OS providing a software fortification around it. 

Dell already provides an offering called the Secure Cyber Vault with Dell PowerProtect in Faction Cloud. Faction is a small scale CSP with five regional datacenters in: 

  • Portland, Oregon 
  • Reston, Virginia
  • Santa Clara, California
  • London, UK
  • Frankfurt, Germany

These have direct connections to AWS, Azure, GCP and other clouds with (backup) data sent to a PowerProtect DD system in a Faction datacenter and then moved into a Cyber Recovery Vault in immutable copy form and separated by a logical air gap from the source data.

The data can be recovered to a PowerProtect appliance, managed by Faction and with direct connections back to the major public clouds.

On-premises PowerProtect systems can replicate data to a Faction cyber vault to enjoy the same logical air-gapped and immutable copy protection.

Note that DD VE can protect applications running in the AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, AWS GovCloud, Azure Government Cloud, Alibaba Cloud, and VMware Cloud on AWS environments. It can be downloaded from the AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud marketplace, as well as being orderable from Dell. 

In principle, then, Dell can build a cyber recovery vault offering in any cloud in which DDVE runs.

With this in mind, let’s look at PowerProtect Cyber Recovery for Azure (PPCRA). It was announced in May and complements Dell’s CyberSense for Dell PowerProtect Cyber Recovery for AWS. 

PPCRA provides a PowerProtect DD Virtual Edition (DDVE) store aka cyber vault in Azure, to protect and isolate on-premises or in-Azure data away from a ransomware attack.

The AWS version of PowerProtect Cyber Recovery, like PPCRA, delivers a DD VE-based cyber vault but located in AWS.

We created a graphic to show the situation so far:

We have, in effect, moved from an on-premises cyber vault to a near-cloud cyber vault (Faction) to in-cloud cyber recovery vaults for AWS and Azure. Logically we could expect to see a cyber recovery vault offering for GCP from Dell.

The Dell CyberSense for Dell PowerProtect Cyber Recovery for AWS depends upon CyberSense. This is the third-party Index Engines product, providing comprehensive full content indexing, with the index searchable as part of a ransomware detection procedure. Index Engines says its analytics and machine learning detect corruption with 99.5 percent confidence.

Logically we could also hope to see CyberSense made available to the Cyber Recovery Vault in Azure. That would depend, we understand, on Index Engines adding the necessary Azure support. Then, when and if GCP gets its Cyber Recovery Vault, and Index Engines adds GCP support, CyberSense could support GCP as well.

We’ve asked Dell about the the provision of PowerProtect Cyber Recovery support for GCP, and asked it and Index Engines about CyberSense support for Azure and GCP. A spokesperson said: “Yes, these do seem like logical next steps. As soon as we have anything to announce along these lines, I will be in touch!”

Jim McGann, VP for marketing and business development at Index Engines, told us: “CyberSense can run in most all cloud platforms. However, as you know CyberSense is sold through partners so it is up to the partners to commercialize and deliver the cloud version of CyberSense. To date, Dell has announced CyberSense for AWS will be available in the second half of this year. They plan to have CyberSense for Azure next followed by Google Cloud over the next few months.”