CxO Decision Brief: Elevate Cyber Resilience with Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery

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Solution Overview

Commvault® Cloud Cleanroom™ Recovery enhances cyber resilience by enabling swift, secure restoration of critical IT systems in a clean, isolated cloud environment. It empowers CISOs to assert control over cyber recovery processes and align with regulatory demands.

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  • Strategic cyber resilience through reliable and secure data recovery
  • Operational integrity by swiftly and effectively resuming post-attack operations
  • Compliance with evolving regulations, minimizing legal exposure
  • Cost efficiency in cyber recovery, aligning with fiscal responsibility
  • Regular, auditable testing for continuous improvement and readiness
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The intensifying sophistication of cyber threats requires proactive cyber recovery plans. Neglecting robust recovery capabilities exposes organizations to crippling disruptions, financial penalties, and reputational damage. Immediate action is crucial.

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Adopting Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery reinforces a strategic shift towards cyber resilience and may require specialized training and team expansion. It elevates the risk posture and redefines enterprise-wide data protection strategies, fostering a culture focused on security and resilience.

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Without a comprehensive commitment, organizations risk maintaining a fragmented resilience framework, leading to increased recovery times, potential data breaches, compromised backups, and jeopardized business continuity following cyberattacks.

1. Solution Value

This GigaOm CxO Decision Brief commissioned by Commvault.

Commvault® Cloud Cleanroom™ Recovery has emerged as a pivotal solution for organizations and their technology leaders, enhancing resilience against cyber threats that adapt and evolve faster than technology leaders can combat them. The challenging threat landscape dictates the need for a new form of cyber readiness and recovery that considers the unknown. Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery facilitates swift, clean, and secure restoration of critical business systems in a secure and isolated on-demand cloud tenant, free from account compromise and unknown third-party access.

The absence of a solution to this problem leaves security teams uncertain about the effectiveness of recovery efforts in an environment free of compromise. This extends the security teams’ work to complete the recovery after the data is restored and the applications are returned to an operational state. Without confirmation that the account compromise is removed, the operational state is not sound. This poses a challenge for security teams as the possibility of re-infection, or additional compromise, remains, even when the business believes it has recovered.

It supports technology leaders in their strategic role of safeguarding organizational assets and keeping the business operational. By creating an on-demand, isolated recovery environment (IRE) in the cloud, Commvault demonstrates a forward-thinking approach to safeguarding sensitive data, making sure business-critical data can be quickly, reliably, and securely restored into a clean environment.

Commvault empowers CISOs to assert control over cyber recovery processes (including preparedness, response planning, testing, roles, and responsibilities) by making sure data and applications are restored to a pristine state without enabling the restoration of compromised credentials. With predictable and auditable recovery testing and the ability to perform forensic analysis post-breach–in a secure and isolated cloud environment–the solution aligns with the nuanced demands of cyber resilience, especially with regard to readiness and recovery.

2. Urgency and Risk

The urgency for proactive cyber recovery plans cannot be overstated. Sophisticated attacks are outpacing our ability to react and respond. Simply playing defense is no longer enough to protect organizations from potentially disastrous breaches.

Robust recovery capabilities are now a vital strategic need, not just an IT checklist item. Neglecting to make recovery a top priority leaves you exposed to crippling disruptions, data theft, financial penalties, and brand-battering headlines. Cybercriminals continually find new angles of attack, so you must stay ahead with innovative recovery solutions that can quickly restore systems and data.

The challenge? Clean, reliable cyber recovery is hard to achieve. Commvault’s solution is valuable because it enables security and IT teams to cleanly recover data from on-premises and cloud environments into an on-demand, isolated, secure recovery environment. Commvault’s Cleanroom Recovery automates complex recovery processes, supporting predictable and scalable recovery of data and applications. The result is that organizations get critical applications back in production as quickly as possible.

Cyber recovery establishes a third pillar alongside the familiar pillars of operational recovery and disaster recovery, as shown in Table 1.

Table 1. Three Pillars of Business Continuity

Operational Recovery Disaster Recovery Cyber Recovery
Scope Individual components Entire systems and infrastructure Cyberattacks
Example Recovering deleted files, application crashes Server room fire, flood Data breach, malware infection,
ransomware attack
Goals Minimize downtime, resume normal operations Business continuity, protect critical data Minimize cyberattack damage and downtime,
reliable and clean recovery
Methods Granular backups, point-in-time recovery Full system backups, off-site replication SIEM, cyber recovery plan, anomaly detection,
air gap, isolated recovery environment (IRE)

Source: Commvault

Regulations, like the Digital Operational Resilience Act (DORA), espouse and require recovery readiness and testing. Frameworks like the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST), Cybersecurity Framework (CSF), and NIS2 Directive (European Union) guide security executives in building profiles and plans, and in many organizations, these frameworks are the benchmark and are strictly followed.

For CISOs, integrating a solution similar to Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery should be considered critical for establishing a robust cyber readiness and recovery framework, as it makes continual cyber recovery testing a practical reality for organizations. This framework complements operational and disaster recovery strategies to support the formation of a comprehensive business continuity plan.

Inaction or delayed implementation of a robust cyber readiness and recovery program undermines the organization’s ability to respond, can disrupt operations in whole or in part, and may expose executives to personal liability.


Adoption demands a unified effort from IT, security, compliance teams, and business units to implement a cyber recovery process that includes recovery into on-demand isolated recovery environments across regional or global operations, marking a significant cultural shift. It requires investments in training, operational procedures, and risk management strategies on a wide scale. Without a comprehensive commitment, companies risk maintaining a fragmented and vulnerable resilience framework, leading to increased recovery times, potential data breaches, compromised backups, and jeopardized business continuity following cyberattacks.

3. Benefits

For the CISO, Commvault’s solution delivers critical advantages.

These include:

  • Strategic cyber resilience: Offers a proactive approach to minimizing the impact of cyber attacks through rapid, reliable, consistent, and secure data recovery capabilities.
  • Operational integrity: Enables the organization to swiftly resume operations post-attack, safeguarding revenues, market presence, and customer confidence.
  • Compliance and governance: Supports compliance with evolving regulations–especially those that require cyber recovery and cyber resilience readiness checks–essential for protecting the organization’s reputation and minimizing legal exposure.
  • Cost efficiency: Provides a cost-effective solution for cyber recovery, aligning with fiscal responsibility and operational efficiency goals.
  • Testing and adaptability: Facilitates regular, auditable cyber recovery testing to provide constant readiness and increased reliability.
  • Strategies to enable AI: Incorporates and facilitates capabilities like data access and backup anomaly detection, data classification and management, optimization of data recovery, and integration with other security enhancements.
  • Clean recovery: Provides clean recovery to clean locations. Because the restoration is specific to application and data–not accounts–the restored environment is clean of compromised accounts. And, as the recovery destination is on-demand and provisioned upon recovery, it is also clean of compromised entry paths, which provides a level of integrity that is simply not possible using “backup and recovery” or “disaster recovery,” neither of which makes room for cleaning those vectors of compromise.
  • Forensic integrity: Since production is restored to a cleanroom and not “in situ,” the forensic integrity of the original compromise is preserved for investigation value. This is often required by insurance companies and valuable to law enforcement.

4. Best Practices

  • Leverage cyber security frameworks like NIST and NIS2 to develop specific profiles and processes for resiliency and continuity.
  • Integrate cyber recovery into the overall business continuity and disaster recovery plans for a holistic approach to resilience.
  • Assess for cyber recovery readiness by implementing a cyber recovery framework to enable readiness, ability to recover, and efficacy of recovery.
  • Continuously evaluate and enhance cyber recovery protocols to adapt to emerging threats and technologies.
  • Test cyber recovery plan regularly for process, integration across the organization, ability to complete, and efficacy of recovery. This is now a NIST requirement for Federal Information Systems (Special Publication 800-34 (SP 800-34) to test the operational recovery, not just simulations and checklists. For non-federal systems, it is a recommendation.
  • Prioritize immutable and indelible data backups as a cornerstone of effective cyber recovery strategies.
  • Adopt cyber recovery that includes on-demand clean recovery environments within the resilience framework to enable reliable and clean recovery to an isolated, clean recovery environment and control costs associated with full operational recovery testing.
  • Integrate cyber recovery into your operating model, document procedures and processes, and train and align staff so they have a complete understanding of their roles and responsibilities.

5. Organizational Impact

A solution like Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery enables a strategic pivot toward cyber resilience, supporting updated disaster recovery plans that address challenges such as data breaches, ransomware, and credential compromise, which traditional disaster recovery plans often overlook. This initiative is a cultural shift towards valuing efficient and effective cyber recovery, necessitating specialized training and team expansion. It elevates the risk posture and redefines enterprise-wide data protection strategies. Success hinges on a collaborative integration effort from IT, security, compliance, and business units, leading to enhanced training, operational adjustments, and refined risk strategies that combine to embed a culture focused on security and resilience.

People Impact

When implementing an application-specific Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery strategy, alignment with IT leadership counterparts (infrastructure, data, and security) is crucial for success. Here are some key recommendations for fostering that collaborative partnership:

  1. First, initiate an open dialogue with leaders in the business and technology organizations to collectively identify the critical applications that are operational lifelines for the business. Provide your cybersecurity lens, but be receptive to their insights on technical dependencies and recovery priorities.
  2. Once the essential apps are identified, work jointly to define the “minimum viable operations” criteria for each one. Don’t go it alone—IT’s operational knowledge is invaluable for specifying the must-have functionalities, data components, and recovery timeframes.
  3. As you delineate roles, position IT as a core partner, not just an execution arm. Collaborate closely on determining trusted recovery points leveraging their system knowledge and your threat intelligence. Provide clear handoffs between confirming a cleanroom’s integrity (your realm) and the actual recovery execution (IT’s wheelhouse).
  4. Advocate for building dedicated feedback loops and open communication channels between your security team and IT’s recovery personnel for each critical application. Issues, findings, and process optimizations should flow continuously both ways.
  5. Establish a joint cyber-recovery team (or center of excellence) that incorporates leveraging on-demand recovery environments in its strategy. That team should include permanent resources from security, data, and IT. This centralized unit can develop deep expertise while strictly segregating this ultra-sensitive recovery process.
  6. Be prepared to encounter cultural resistance from IT to this integrated model. Historically, security, data, and IT have operated in siloes with differing priorities. Overcome this by positioning cyber recovery as a truly shared, make-or-break objective transcending departmental lines.
  7. Ultimately, sell this collaborative approach not as smart cybersecurity, but as indispensable business resilience. Application downtime in incidents isn’t just an IT problem; it’s an existential corporate risk. Through lockstep partnership, you support a surgical, pedigreed recovery capability for the organization’s most precious assets.

Investment Outlook

An investment in Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery should be viewed as a strategic cybersecurity enhancement, fortifying the organization’s defenses against cyber threats. For the CISO and CIO, allocating resources to this solution aligns with a broader strategy of risk mitigation and improved cyber resilience. This investment is critical not just for safeguarding data and systems but also for supporting the organization’s ability to maintain operations and trust in the aftermath of a cyber incident.

The success of this initiative hinges on a collaborative investment model co-owned by both IT and Security leadership. Cleanroom recovery transcends any one department’s budget; it is a business resilience imperative that demands shared accountability and aligned incentives.

IT and security leaders must jointly present the business case to executive stakeholders, calculating the cost of potential application downtime and data loss from cybersecurity incidents and communicating the reputational and operational risks from catastrophic breaches.

Once funded, IT and security teams should contribute designated resources, enabling a fair split. Explore creative co-funding models where IT contributes infrastructure, licensing, and technical staffing while security covers threat intelligence, forensics capabilities, and security-specific professionals (for example, incident response experts).

Implement joint governance with total visibility into all investment sources and deliverables. Establish clear accountability for both IT and security leaders co-managing execution, timelines, and success metrics, with regular status updates rolling up to the highest executive levels.

The cost of implementing Commvault’s solution should be weighed against the potential impact of cyber threats, including operational downtime, reputational damage, and regulatory penalties. Commvault’s solution mitigates these impacts and offers cost efficiencies over time through reduced incident impacts and streamlined on-demand recovery.

By mandating a balanced co-investment with collective ownership, IT and security will be laser-focused partners in making cyber recovery an operational reality. This investment supports the CISO’s goals of checking operational efficiency, meeting regulatory mandates, and preserving customer trust, positioning it as a cornerstone of the organization’s cyber resilience framework.

6. Solution Timeline

A strategic implementation timeline, informed by a Commvault Cyber Recovery Readiness Assessment, will minimize disruption and make certain there is alignment with operational requirements. This phased approach, tailored to the organization’s specific needs, underscores the importance of planning, testing, and deploying the solution to strengthen cyber resilience.

Plan, Test, Deploy

Implementing Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery requires a strategic, phased approach tailored to the organization’s specific needs. This three-stage process minimizes disruption and aligns with operational requirements while strengthening cyber resilience.

Plan: Conduct a comprehensive cyber recovery readiness assessment to identify critical applications, define recovery objectives, and establish roles and responsibilities across IT, security, and business units.

Test: Execute regular, controlled tests of the cyber recovery process that leverage the unique capabilities of Commvault’s Cleanroom Recovery, focusing on application-specific scenarios. Validate the integrity of recovered data, system functionality, and the effectiveness of the isolated recovery environment.

Deploy: Integrate Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery into the organization’s incident response and business continuity plans. Train personnel on their roles and responsibilities, establish communication protocols, and confirm readiness for rapid activation during an actual cyber incident.

By following this strategic Plan, Test, Deploy approach, organizations can confidently implement Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery, delivering a robust, tested, and integrated solution that enhances the overall cyber resilience posture.

Future Considerations

As cyber threats continue to evolve, so too will the capabilities of Commvault’s Cleanroom Recovery. CISOs should stay informed about these developments to continually enhance their organization’s cyber resilience.

The CISO’s approach to implementing Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery should be strategic and holistic:

  • Strategic integration: Integrate within the broader cybersecurity strategy, making certain it enhances the organization’s resilience against cyber threats while aligning with risk-management objectives.
  • Embrace technological advancements: Stay ahead by leveraging AI and machine learning advancements. Monitor emerging threats and evaluate how innovations can fortify detection and recovery processes.
  • Foster collaborative security culture: Cultivate a security-aware environment across the organization. Use its solutions as a cornerstone for collaborative efforts between IT, security, and other business units, underlining the shared responsibility in cyber resilience.
  • Support regulatory compliance: Utilize compliance capabilities and adaptability to meet new data protection and privacy regulations to help the organization remain compliant.
  • Enhance incident response: Include the solution’s role to enable quicker and more effective cyber incident management. Define clear protocols for leveraging its technology in transitioning from detection to recovery.
  • Create dedicated and integrated teams: Establish cross-functional teams that focus on integrating the solution into cyber recovery planning and incident response. This provides a coordinated and agile response to threats, leveraging its capabilities to enhance cyber resilience.

By focusing on these strategic considerations, the CISO can make sure it serves as a critical asset and a key component of the organization’s cyber security strategy.

7. Analyst’s Take

The role of security executives has never been more critical. They bear the strategic responsibility of responding to cyber incidents even as they fortify their organizations against them. Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery emerges as a pivotal solution, going beyond recovery capabilities to provide a comprehensive approach to enhancing cyber resilience. It aligns with the needs and responsibilities of today’s CISOs and enables security leaders to not only protect against a broad spectrum of cyber threats but also help to confirm the continuity of business operations and compliance with regulatory standards.

Adopting Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery signifies a strategic move towards a more resilient posture. It addresses a critical gap by providing a robust, scalable solution that supports the dynamic needs of organizations that strive to protect their data integrity and availability. The capability aligns with market drivers vital to security executives, such as the increasing sophistication of cyber threats and the growing emphasis on regulatory compliance.

To fully capitalize on this solution, CISOs must foster collaboration between infrastructure, data, and security teams to support an integrated approach to cyber resilience. Commvault’s commitment to innovation and its focus on comprehensive recovery readiness position it as a rational and indispensable asset in any security executive’s arsenal. Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery represents a forward-thinking approach to cyber resilience, enabling CISOs to have confidence in their recovery efforts while maintaining operational continuity and regulatory compliance in a digital-first world.

8. About GigaOm

GigaOm provides technical, operational, and business advice for IT’s strategic digital enterprise and business initiatives. Enterprise business leaders, CIOs, and technology organizations partner with GigaOm for practical, actionable, strategic, and visionary advice for modernizing and transforming their business. GigaOm’s advice empowers enterprises to successfully compete in an increasingly complicated business atmosphere that requires a solid understanding of constantly changing customer demands.

GigaOm works directly with enterprises both inside and outside of the IT organization to apply proven research and methodologies designed to avoid pitfalls and roadblocks while balancing risk and innovation. Research methodologies include but are not limited to adoption and benchmarking surveys, use cases, interviews, ROI/TCO, market landscapes, strategic trends, and technical benchmarks. Our analysts possess 20+ years of experience advising a spectrum of clients from early adopters to mainstream enterprises.

GigaOm’s perspective is that of the unbiased enterprise practitioner. Through this perspective, GigaOm connects with engaged and loyal subscribers on a deep and meaningful level.

9. Copyright

© Knowingly, Inc. 2024 "CxO Decision Brief: Elevate Cyber Resilience with Commvault Cloud Cleanroom Recovery" is a trademark of Knowingly, Inc. For permission to reproduce this report, please contact