Your Guide to Source Code Escrow – FAQs Answered – Part 2

globally in our news headlines at the moment. With the recent shockwave relating to Silicon Valley Bank’s announcement of bankruptcy, the quick demise of Credit Suisse due to a string of scandals, top management changes and multi-billion dollar losses resulting in a huge slump in its shares and bonds, to new regulations relating to the management of third-party supplier risks, many businesses are left questioning their operational resiliency and what they can do to protect themselves from the potential risks of their IT service provider going bust. Source code escrow provides this assurance to businesses, helping them to protect their IT investments and maintain their software in the event of software supply-chain disruption. 

In this article, we look at the most frequently asked questions we receive about source code escrow, covering how it can benefit you, source code escrow for cloud hosted applications and the most popular SaaS escrow agreements. 

To read part 1 of this article, please click here.

How can source code escrow benefit you?

Protect your investment: Source code escrow ensures you have access to the source code of your custom software in the event that something happens to the software vendor or developer.

Ensure continued support: If the software vendor or developer is unable to provide ongoing support and updates, the source code escrow company can release the code to you or a new development team.

Provide peace of mind to customers: By using source code escrow, software developers can show their customers that they take the security and long term support of their custom software seriously.

Comply with industry standards: In some industries, using source code escrow is a standard practice and may be required by regulations.

Avoid costly disputes: In the event of a dispute with the software vendor or software developer, having the source code in escrow can help avoid costly legal battles and will allow you to continue using and maintaining the software.

Can Source Code Escrow be used for cloud hosted applications?

The answer is yes! With an increase in companies shifting from traditional IT methods to SaaS-based offerings, SaaS vendors have more control over a business’s source code and data meaning more businesses are looking at ways to protect themselves if something were to happen to the SaaS vendor resulting in data loss. 

A SaaS Escrow Agreement is the process of keeping a copy of critical SaaS application data with a SaaS escrow vendor. Similar to source code escrow, where critical software source code is stored with a source code escrow company, SaaS escrow applies the same logic to the entire cloud environment including the data hosted within a SaaS application. It allows companies to protect their data that resides within SaaS applications hosted by a third party, protecting them against data loss.

The most popular SaaS continuity escrow solutions include:

  • Verified Software Escrow for SaaS – This service incorporates a deposit of all cloud assets that would be required to build and deploy the SaaS application and cloud environment. The  build and deploy of the software to a cloud environment is verified by Escrow London on an annual basis. 
  • Software Escrow for SaaS – This incorporates a deposit of all the cloud assets that would be required to build and deploy the SaaS application and cloud environment. Cloud deployment verification and cloud deployment verification with code quality audit options are available to the Beneficiary. 
  • SaaS Access Continuity – This service is a cost-effective solution best suited to a single-tenanted environment that provides the Beneficiary with the required access credentials and documentation to the cloud production environment. The source code escrow vendor will perform tests on credentials on a quarterly basis to ensure that access can still be gained.
  • Enterprise SaaS Continuity Escrow – This solution provides a redundant operating environment of the SaaS application that can be quickly spun up in the event of a release situation. The source code escrow vendor can also maintain the SaaS service live for an agreed period of time (usually 90 days) in the event of a software vendor failure. Escrow London performs a half yearly verification to provide assurance that the system can be built and deployed within an escrow environment.

Evan Lever, Founder & CEO, Escrow London


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About Escrow London

Escrow London is a global source code escrow and SaaS escrow vendor headquartered in the United Kingdom. Our global coverage is provided across our London office, Escrow London North America Inc in Atlanta, and our Australian office in Sydney.

We have invested considerable resources into innovation to reinvent source code escrow for a SaaS world. As well as source code escrow solutions, Escrow London provides a range of SaaS Continuity escrow solutions suitable for AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud hosted SaaS applications. We support a wide range of clients includes major law firms, banks, central banks, insurance companies, technology companies and government organisations.

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