SaaS Escrow
The Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery model offers end-users a fast and economic solution for deploying software across a business. But what about the increased risk?

…. just so we’re on the same page, what is SaaS?

Take a look at this video that introduces the concept of SaaS and how it differs from regular software.

SaaS Escrow

Through using “cloud services”, “managed software”, and “hosted technology”, the SaaS delivery model offers end-users a fast and economic solution for deploying software across a business. Many of the costs and implementation issues associated with traditional software have gone.

Unfortunately, with the new SaaS business model, much of the due diligence and business risk planning have been removed from the procurement process. While this delivery model costs less, the risk profile of using SaaS is almost always much higher.

  • As an End-User; your reliance upon SaaS mission critical technology and access to their data needs to be protected.
  • As a SaaS vendor; ensuring you have escrowed your software and have a plan for end-user’s data is an excellent marketing tool and will reduce the risk to your business.

New risks

The SaaS model presents new risks that should be considered during the procurement process:

  • Application availability – vendor failure could result in immediate, total and permanent loss of the application and data.  Historical client/ server installations often function for years after vendor failure.
  • Data availability – SaaS vendors retain end-user data in their systems. In the event of vendor failure, the end-user may not have access to their data.
  • Immediacy – Because of the risk of immediate, total and permanent loss caused by a vendor failure, an end-user must be able to organise the release of escrowed material and implement an alternative solution rapidly.

The dual impact of reliance upon constant access to SaaS applications coupled with the immediate impact of a SaaS vendor failure requires a particular risk mitigation plan. One that Harbinger can help you with.

How Harbinger can help:

We have carefully considered the risk factors related to the SaaS model and engineered a solution that protects the vendor’s intellectual property, yet provides the comfort and security the end-user needs to commit to adopting the SaaS model.  As always, we also provide you with the flexibility to modify arrangements or agreements to meet the unique needs of your business.

Benefits to the SaaS vendor:

  • SaaS escrow will provide your clients with confidence that you are conscious of the risks to their business and have taken steps to ensure continuity
  • You can gain a competitive advantage by neutralising a key impediment to an end-user choosing your service
  • Reduce the liability that you or your business has by proving diligence
  • Harbinger’s SaaS agreement can protect the source code and the data

Benefits to the SaaS end-user:

  • Protect your critical data and access to applications
  • Immediate access to SaaS source-code during a release event
  • Help form a “community of interest” (other SaaS users) who can pool effort and resources to establish a replacement service
  • Reduce the risks that are inherent in relying on third-party software vendors.
  • Take control of your business continuity and ensure reliability
Next steps:
Call us today on +61 3 9618 2000. We will spend some time with you to help define your SaaS risk factors and to discuss the specific requirements of your business. We will provide you with sample SaaS escrow agreements and help you implement escrow and software verification services to reduce your software risk and give you the comfort that you need.