Recently, the tech community observed an important event involving InfluxData, a cloud database provider. This article dissects the situation, explores the aftermath, and uncovers key learnings.
InfluxData, a cloud database service provider, made a strategic decision to close some of their server locations. This included the Europe West 1 region.
Some customers claim they were not aware of the changes, and as a result lost data.
This raised several questions around sufficient of communication from cloud service providers, their responsibilities to customers, and what customers are responsible for.
Communicating Changes: The InfluxData Approach
InfluxData say they alerted customers to the changes via several avenues.
- updates to the user interface,
- notifications on their website,
- and emails sent directly to customers.
However, some customers claimed to have missed these communications.
The Response from the Community
In the aftermath of the server location shutdown, users reported varying experiences.
Some claimed they hadn’t received emails from InfluxData about the changes, while others said they didn’t regularly check the user interface or the website where the updates were published.
These responses underscore the different ways that customers interact with cloud service providers, and shows how there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to communication.
How, when, and where communication happens can be just as critical as the content being communicated.
Lessons from the Incident
While it’s undeniable that this event has raised important questions about customer communication and data management, it’s also a crucial reminder of the importance of backing up data.
Here are some key takeaways:
- Clear Communication is Essential: Communication needs to be clear, timely, and effective. Diverse communication channels should be used to accommodate the different ways customers interact with the services.
- Data Backup is Crucial: Data backups are crucial for any system – regardless of where it is hosted. Having a backup strategy is an essential safety net.
- Shared Responsibility: Cloud computing requires shared responsibility. Both service providers and customers play a role in maintaining data safety.
InfluxData’s incident, while unfortunate, provides a valuable lessons on how to work with cloud service providers.