Sep 19, 2023
4 min read

DataNinja Uses Alcion to Safeguard Microsoft 365 Exchange Data

DataNinja Uses Alcion to Safeguard Microsoft 365 Exchange Data


Industry: Software Development / Software-as-a-Service


DataNinja is a software-as-a-service company that helps FDA regulated manufacturers, including companies in the pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, and medical device manufacturing verticals of life sciences, with the seamless digital transition of legacy paper based manufacturing quality systems from paper records, and siloed spreadsheets to a connected, real-time CFR 21 Part 11 compliant electronic manufacturing records. By helping their customers go paperless in manufacturing, the DataNinja platform provides real-time feedback to manufacturing execution activities ensuring compliance and reducing errors, while automating the inventory and financial transactions previously frozen in siloed paper records.

Rob Nelson, the CEO of DataNinja and holds a degree in electrical engineering from BYU. Before founding DataNinja, he was the Director of Information Systems at medical device and reagent manufacturer BioMerieux. Apart from advising manufacturing and technology executives on how to best leverage IOT and cloud technologies to unlock their operational data to innovate faster, he also administers Microsoft 365 at DataNinja and several client portfolio companies.

“Ensuring that the large volume of emails we send and receive is protected is critical to our business, and that of our clients. Alcion, with a minimal investment of time, has allowed us to protect our critical Exchange data from accidental deletions and against malware and ransomware. It’s also been the easiest to use backup platform we have ever seen.”

CEO, DataNinja

The Challenge

The primary motivator behind DataNinja adopting a Microsoft Office 365 backup solution was the need to protect their data residing in Exchange against both accidental and malicious data loss. The relatively high importance of data stored in Exchange is a result of the strong preference for email workflows from DataNinja’s customers. This had resulted in emails becoming a method to communicate requests and responses that contain critical documents. Before adopting Alcion, DataNinja used several onprem backup options over the years. However, they realized they needed a cloud-based Backup-as-a-Service (BaaS) platform that was easy to setup and operate at scale. Additionally, given their email-driven customer workflows, they also had several extremely large mailboxes that required a robust and high performance backup platform for reliable backup and recovery. Finally, understanding the increased importance of cyber security within DataNinja, Rob was looking for a security-focused data protection platform.

Securing Microsoft 365 Data Protection with Alcion

Alcion, designed from the ground up for high throughput, reliable, and secure backups, was an easy choice for DataNinja’s requirements. They discovered it was easy to get up and running, and onboarding was completed in minutes. With a modern UI and clean user experience including activity notifications and search, allowed Rob to quickly confirm backups of large mailboxes, and what data was being reliably protected. Alcion’s multi-layered security model including encryption, secure key management, strong isolation, and delayed backup deletions gave DataNinja the key security properties they were looking for to ensure the safety of their own data and shared customer information.

Key Benefits

Compliance Scores

The ability to quickly view the protection status of all users in the form of a top-level compliance score made it easy to see backup coverage of all users and identify gaps.

Ease of Use

Given Alcion’s simplified design approach, Rob was able to complete setup and start protecting data within minutes without needing technical support or documentation. A clean modern UI allowed him to easily create backups, view activity, and perform restores without involving any of the other admins in the company.


Given the high volume of emails in each user’s backup, the ability to use predictive search to find deleted data was invaluable, when bringing back data from years ago.

No Operational Pain

Steady-state operation had no overhead for DataNinja, as Alcion took care of all operational issues for large backups, including successfully and transparently redriving backup failures in case of transient outages

or upstream throttling of Microsoft’s Graph APIs.

Intelligent Backups

Alcion, with multiple daily backups that automatically adjust to user activity, provided Rob with confidence that the company’s emails were being protected when the users were the most active.

Threat Protection

Given the high value of their data stored in Microsoft 365, threat protection provided by a data protection solution was the most important requirement for DataNinja. Alcion’s comprehensive backup policies,

malware removal from backups, and ransomware detection capabilities provided peace of mind against threats, both internal and external.

No Training Required

Alcion’s platform, designed with both part-time IT generalists and professional backup administrators in mind, allowed Rob to successfully onboard and protect the entire organization.