Cloud outages are a serious threat to any business that uses the cloud to store data, and they happen more often than you think. In 2017, a massive outage occurred in the Amazon Web Services cloud, causing businesses to be completely disconnected from important data for hours. Durham-based Arpio helps businesses make sure that will never happen again.
Arpio is a SaaS data-disaster-recovery product, designed to help businesses protect and restore their data should a data outage or cyber-attack occur.
CEO Doug Neumann said that, at the time of the AWS outage, he was working for Raleigh-based Bandwidth, and he and his team were shocked that they could have lost their data. So, when he and Bandwidth co-worker Shaw Terwilliger decided they wanted to start a business together, cloud-based disaster prevention for data seemed like the perfect fit. Now they are the Co-Founders of Arpio.
“We took a long, hard look at what it meant to cover that scale of disaster in AWS,” Neumann said, “and it was going to be a whole lot of work to do it… We said, ‘There should be a product that does this, and someone should solve this one time, and then other people don’t have to.’ That’s really where the idea of Arpio came from.”
There are three primary public clouds—AWS, Microsoft Azure Cloud and Google Cloud—but Arpio focuses on AWS. In order to understand how Arpio works, you first have to understand how the cloud works.
“You hear this thing ‘the cloud,’ and you think of this ephemeral thing that’s in the ether,” Neumann said, “but it turns out there are actually physical data centers in a number of locations around the world.”
Arpio uses a technique called “geo-redundancy,” in which it stores data in more than just one center across the world. That way, if there is a cyber-attack or an outage in one region, businesses still have access to their data because it is also stored in a different region.
Should a cyber attack happen in an AWS region, attackers might gain entry to all of the data a company has on the cloud, while companies themselves might lose access to it—data that is essential to running that business. Without that information, companies could be forced to go out of business. Arpio gives business owners peace of mind that their data is safe.
AWS regions are independent of each other, so only a very sophisticated cyber attack would be able to cause outages in multiple regions, said Neumann.
Arpio has been bootstrapped by its co-founders since it was launched in October 2019, and Neumann said they may start fundraising in the summer. Arpio’s main customer base is other SaaS companies, and specifically startups.
“Our customer base is largely focused on other SaaS companies who are running their applications in AWS,” Neumann said, “and our value proposition to them is, ‘You could spend months building this yourself, or you can spend 15 minutes in our tool configuring it, and then spend your months building things that are really strategic to your business.’”