Enabling Backups for Missed Accounts

The following changes were made on 24/8/20 by the Backup365 development team due to the discovery of an issue that has since been resolved.  If any of your customers were affected by this issue, you will have been contacted by your Manage Protect Partner Manager

Enabling Backups for Missed Accounts 

What We’ve Done

Enabled backups for some new mailboxes that were incorrectly missed.

Why Now?

We became aware of a defect in our mailbox discovery process that prevented us from automatically enabling backups for new mailboxes. The issue was immediately fixed with the fix being applied retroactively.

The Defect

When accounts are added to Microsoft 365 tenants, our automated processes discover the new accounts and, if configured to do so, automatically enable backups for those accounts.

To prevent mailbox duplication, some validation checks are performed, such as checking if new mailboxes are renames or aliases of existing mailboxes. Specifically, if Microsoft reports an existing email address as now being an alias of a new primary email address, then we’ll automatically set the status of the new primary address to match that of the existing alias address, then disable the alias. This happens so that the new primary email address is the active one, but the historic address still retains its full backup history.

Our process did not allow for Microsoft to sometimes include primary email addresses themselves in the list of their aliases. Effectively, Microsoft’s API sometimes tells us that a primary email address aliases itself. In this scenario, we disabled any existing alias address, as well as disabling the new primary email address for being an alias of itself. Despite having extensive test coverage, this was not picked up because the issue was masked by eventual consistency in our cloud-based data store. 

The code has now been corrected. Importantly, because we record the reason any time an account is disabled, we’ve been able to easily determine which accounts were affected, and managed to enable them as they should have been. 

There has been no long term impact on any mailbox account.