Besides the increase in security and data breaches, data loss is up 400% from 2012. Although this does not bode well for a company’s customers, companies also have a lot at stake when it comes to data loss.
According to the National Archives & Records Administration, 93% of companies that lost their data center for 10 days or more during a disaster filed for bankruptcy within one year of the disaster. Additional research from the University of Texas has also found that 43% of companies that suffer catastrophic data loss never reopen, and 51% close within two years.
While there may be various reasons for data loss, there is a simple way to prevent devastating data loss: create backups. However, 58% of businesses have no backup plan for data loss.
Here are some of the best practices for safely backing up data.
Backup Data Regularly
Although the amount of data may vary per company, they share a common denominator: whatever is stored frequently changes as data is created and/or modified on a regular basis. This is why it is important to frequently backup data. Data can be backed up hourly, daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly. Choose a backup schedule that is apt to how often data is created. The more frequent, the better.
There are several programs that can automate the backup process for you.
Test Data Backups
Even if backups are completed, an important practice that is often neglected is testing these backups frequently to ensure that you can actually restore the data when you need it.
Store Data Backups in More than One Place
When it comes to backing up important files, there is no such thing as having too many backups.
Store data in both onsite and offsite locations. Keep multiple copies of external hard drives: one onsite for easy access and another backup copy in an offsite location (like a bank safety deposit box) in case of disaster. These ideas represent an easy and inexpensive way to store backup files.
However, besides the fact that hardware devices may run the risk of being stolen or broken, it is easier for malware programs like spyware to encrypt data stored on these hardware devices, so you also need to store copies of your backup on offsite locations. Make use of file servers, offsite servers, and cloud storage.
These solutions allow you to access your data from anywhere in the world as long as you have an internet connection. On the downside, these solutions can be pricey and data retrieval depends on internet speed.
Final Thoughts: Best Practices for Safely Backing Up Data
Life has been made infinitely easier with the help of technology. But, it’s important to remember that technology isn’t fail-safe, and can cause serious damage to businesses if it breaks down. Thus, it is important to take a proactive role in ensuring that data is always safe.If you need help securing your data systems, we’re here for you. Contact the experts at Harrington Technologies.
Do you cringe when you hear you need to backup your data? You know it’s important, but the thought of implementing a backup system in your small business sounds daunting and costly.
Unfortunately, in today’s world where cyber security threats run rampant and business is done online, having a backup plan is no longer an option. Protecting your data by backing it up has become a non-negotiable.
Fortunately, simple backup plans have made this essential technology more affordable and easier to implement.
Data Loss is More Common Than You Think
Data loss doesn’t just happen to large businesses, or companies with lots of servers. It happens daily to unsuspecting small businesses for a large variety of reasons.
- In the U.S., a hard drive dies every 15 seconds, according to Carnegie Mellon Universities.
- There are 3.5 new hacking threats every second, according to Trend Micro.
- Neglected software updates and patches can lead to lost files.
- Human errors lead to deleted files, misplaced USB drives, and lost hardware.
- Natural disasters can strike anywhere, anytime, and in any business.
- Ransomware is a fast-growing threat to small businesses.
The list of reasons could go on and on. Regardless of how or why data loss occurs, it immediately puts a halt to your operations. The lack of productivity and prolonged downtime can chip away at your profits, costing your business beau coup bucks.
The True Cost of Data Loss
Many small businesses don’t realize the true costs of not having a protection plan in place until it’s too late. When disaster has struck and you’re struggling to recover your customer’s information, your business intelligence, and other essentials, you’re not working on your business. Your business is suffering from downtime. That downtime can add up quickly.
- 80% of data interruptions close a business for a day or more, according to a 2009 Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Survey;
- 43% of businesses that suffer a major data loss never reopen their doors, according to studies at the University of Texas;
- And 70% go out of business within a year, according to DTI/Pricewaterhousecoopers.
The reason? 75% of customers are more likely to stop dealing with businesses who experience data loss because they don’t trust them anymore, according to the Ponemon Institute’s “Reputation Impact of a Data Breach” report.
How to Simplify the Data Backup Process
Are you sold on the importance of data backup yet? I hope so. But if you’re like most small business owners, you’re hesitant to start backing up your data because you’re busy. You have too much going on to research backup solutions and implement a backup process.
Backing up your data doesn’t have to break the bank, or break your back (figuratively, of course). There are a few simple things you can do to protective your business’s most sensitive information and avoid disastrous downtime.
Get an External Hard Drive
External hard drives come in all shapes and sizes. The amount of data you have and the features you need will determine which hard drive is right for you to use as backup.
You can hard drives with wifi-enabled backup, which means you don’t have to have a clunky mess of cables just to secure your data.
You can get hard drives that are smaller than shoeboxes, which means you don’t need to have bulky hardware cluttering up your office.
There are a wide variety of options that will work effectively to keep your business data safe that don’t require you to sacrifice closet space to store large equipment or for you to remember to move your data over so it stays safe. Set up is easy, storage is small, and backing up your data is simple.
Supplement With Software
Having hardware as your exclusive form of business backup can still mean you’re at risk of disaster if a fire, flood, or other natural disaster breaks out. Supplementing your backup plan with software is a smart idea.
There are plenty of software solutions that work quietly in the background to store your most up-to-date data. Carbonite, for example, sits on your computers and constantly takes snapshots of your data so if something goes wrong, you have the latest version of your files. There’s no risk of forgetting to update. It’s done for you. Simple.
Ready to Get Started?
Data backup isn’t optional. It’s necessary.
If you’d like help finding the right simple backup solution for your business, we’re just a phone call or email away. Get in touch with us to learn more about how you can secure your business without tremendous work or high cost.