How to Disaster-Proof Your Data Backup
It’s essential to set up a good data backup and recovery plan to ensure the long-term success of your business.
But proper data backup is often neglected because it involves a lot of effort and time, but doesn’t produce any immediate benefits or results. Because of this, many people simply choose to ignore it. But this still doesn’t diminish the importance of data backup. Those of us who are too busy to back up data will one day pay a hefty price when things go awry.
Of course, there are people who have this important task done for them because they are employed by a large corporation. These companies tend to have IT staff dedicated to carrying out regular backups on each of their employees’ computers. But smaller companies do not have the resources to implement such a routine, so they must resort to other tactics in order to keep company data safe and secure.
Cloud storage – the obvious solution?
Services like Dropbox and OneDrive have made cloud storage available for the masses. Cloud storage has some benefits, such as immediate backups of local files to an online server and the ability to access those files anywhere. But even though these are very mature, they’re not totally safe from outages and even worse, going out of business.
Then there’s the ever-present threat of data-corrupting malware that might seep into our online cloud accounts. Keeping these dangers in mind, backing up data to the cloud doesn’t seem like a bulletproof solution either. So what can be done to keep your files safe and survive any data-related disasters?
Choosing the right cloud storage service
Cloud storage solutions have become a viable option due to the vast adoption of fast internet services by the majority out there. And when it comes to cloud storage solutions, there are quite a few out there to choose from. Narrowing down to just one service can take a while, but make sure that it’s one service that you choose at the end. This will save you from the hassle of syncing data across multiple services and ensuring that it’s safe and up to date.
So how do you choose the right cloud storage service? One of the most important factors you should consider before choosing a cloud storage service is its platform support. A service which is not accessible on your platforms of choice will be of no use. Ideally, it should support all popular platforms such as Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and to some extent, BlackBerry 10.
Some of these cloud services also offer business-focused versions which usually add the ability to manage multiple accounts with quotas. There might also be additional functionality which helps business users in common day-to-day tasks. There are a few cloud storage companies that operate a private cloud, which aims to offer better security for businesses but these are limited in platform support.
Making sure your backup is disaster-proof
You might think that your job is done once you’ve made a backup of your data. Well, not quite, as there’s yet another element you need to take care of—natural disasters. And by that we mean real disasters such as floods, earthquakes, hurricanes, and so on. Computer equipment is notoriously fragile, and there’s a real danger of data loss if a natural disaster occurs.
Therefore, designing a data backup plan that takes natural disasters into consideration is very important. The key thing in such a plan would be to distribute your data across multiple locations. Backing up to a local server is faster but you need the security of a second backup stored in a remote location. This is where you can take advantage of a cloud service with its remote servers.
In the event of a disaster, having your data back up in a remote location ensures that there is no data loss. Seek a cloud storage partner that has a track record of providing reliable data storage and good customer support. But entrusting your company’s data into a third-party storage provider can be very risky. Make sure to encrypt the data that you back up onto a cloud storage company. Doing this will ensure the security of your data if the cloud company’s servers are compromised.
If your business deals in large data files, cloud storage might become impractical and very costly. To avoid unnecessary charges, discuss your data requirements with the cloud company and the bandwidth costs associated with them. Figure out if backing up large amounts of data to the cloud is sustainable and reliable. If possible, negotiate a deal with the storage company in which it will deliver you the data through physical media in the worst case scenario.
To make sure that your business is fully protected from disaster, it’s important to set up a backup solution that creates several redundant backups in different locations, and that has the ability to recover your important data rapidly in case of a disaster ocurring.