Data Backup

Data Backup

Most people understand that a good data backup system is the best insurance that an organization can have against a catastrophic loss of the electronic information it needs to operate. But a good data backup system goes well beyond basic insurance. An ideal system has all of these components:

Records and duplicates data automatically

The most common breakdown in a data backup system is users failing to actively backup their data. Today’s technologies can easily duplicate data on a regular basis. However, a good intelligent solution for automated backup is often not simple and requires elements specific to an organization’s needs. During data duplication, the data being duplicated may not be available for use, to preserve the integrity of the backup.  Therefore, backups are typically scheduled for times when data is least likely to be accessed, often overnight. However, for international firms operating under a 24 hour day, there may not be a good time to backup data for the entire organization.  Another major issue for automatic backups is disconnected data systems, such as laptops.  A robust system may be configured to perform backups for laptops whenever the laptop is connected to an organization’s network. But again, the time performing the data backup may render a laptop inoperative for a time. The time may be prohibitively long for a laptop that has been long disconnected from the organizational network.

Frequent Data Backup

In most cases, a daily backup is sufficient for an organization, but not always. For example, a highly transaction-based business may lose an entire day’s records if a mishap happens shortly before the scheduled daily backup. In these cases, data backup may be more appropriate every hour. In some organizations, data backup frequency may vary for the type of data being recorded. For example, applications may back up transaction data hourly, but general business operations and correspondence daily. Finally, data backup must always allow for ad-hoc backup operations, so authorized people may back up data at off times. For example, a business development department may require an ad hoc backup immediately following completion of a major proposal so the backup system holds the final document.

Is online and secure

Some people believe having a network, but not cloud-based, backup is secure.  However, one of the major causes of data loss is data removal from the office place, which accounts for nearly 10% of data loss events. Keeping backup data where the IT systems are present substantially increases the likelihood that these data losses are more catastrophic owing to physical removal of data storing facilities. And although it is much less likely than data removal or physical theft, data loss due to a natural disaster can be substantially more devastating. Data loss due to a severe fire causes 30% of unsecured business to go bankrupt within 1 year.  Third-party remote backups mitigate these threats by having the backup geographically distant from a systems-wide disaster and eliminates the possibility of physical removal of equipment in your office.

One reason most people resist cloud-based backup systems is concerns over data security. While it is true that no system is entirely secure, a cloud-based data-storage system provided by a responsible third party is one of the most secure methods to safely store and retrieve your data. Storing data on the cloud is essentially the same as storing money in a bank.  A professional cloud-based data solutions provider invests heavily in security and protection of their customers’ data just as a bank invests heavily in securing its depositors’ money. Responsible solutions providers, like banks, are also insured against mishaps such as data loss. You may be also interested to know that some of the most high profile data loss incidents, such as Target and Home Depot, the losses were a result of hackers obtaining stealing login credentials from authorized parties. To carry the analogy further, these incidents were the equivalent of inadvertently providing thieves with your ATM pin code; not from exploiting security weaknesses.

Cloud-based backup is also substantially cheaper than local physical systems where the eliminated need of purchasing physical systems and having staff administer them can save up to 30% over a local-physical systems solution.

Can be quickly retrieved by the right people

A good data backup system allows a firm to recover from a disastrous situation in hours, or minutes from a smaller situation, such as an inadvertently deleted document captured by the system.  However, as illustrated in the section above, the method to access backed up data must also ensure that only the proper people have access to the right data. For a small organization, right access may mean only senior management and appropriate IT people can recover a backup. In larger organizations, all staffers may have access rights to their own backed up data. Whatever the solution, access to backups must be even more secure than access to the system itself.  Staff with backup data access must be well trained in securing their access credentials.

May have a fail-over option

The latest data backup solutions also act as “fail-over” locations. Essentially, in the event that the organization’s primary IT systems go down for any reason, the data backup location immediately assumes the systems function as the primary system fails. A fail-over system can be very expensive but may be the right solution given your company’s needs.

ETTE provides their clients with secure data backup and recovery as part of its surprisingly affordable service plan.  As part of our services, we will meet with your organization and have an in-depth discussion of your data and backup recovery needs. We will set up minor and major backups at intervals that allow your business to remain agile and operate with minimal intrusion and delay from the backup system. We will incorporate strategies to ensure disconnectable hardware, such as laptops and USB storage systems, are included in the backup strategy. We will help you to formulate policies on data backup that, if followed, will provide you with the safest and securest computing backup environment. Meanwhile, we will keep your actual data professionally secure on the cloud. Contact us to find out more.

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