We hear this all the time, that so and so company has lost all of its data, or has been hacked, and customer’s private information has been leaked out. This is quite embracing from the companies point of view, also very serious and worrying from the customers point, as they are not sure if their information is safe with this company or not.
One of the first steps of protecting customer’s information is to take regular backups of “ Everything”. When running a business the last thing you want is loosing all of your information, especially if you run an online business, and you totally really on your customer’s data to operate your business.
Its frustrating enough when you lose all of your family images, videos, or music that you had stored on your computer or hard drive, imagine if that was your bread and butter, what impact would that have on your life. Not taking in count the stress levels, which probably would shoot up through the roof.
What can you do to ensure that your files are safe and secure, and regardless of what scenario you find your self in, you can easily retrieve your important files, and continue your day without breaking a sweat.
Backup Backup Backup Everything
Its simple, backup everything that relates to you business, there are many ways you can backup your files such as the normal ones:
- Backup Hard drives
- USB Drives
- CD Drives
Which are all good, but what if someone gets hold of these devices, or there’s a disaster in your building (touch wood, this wouldn’t happen – we just had water pipe burst, which was a pain), but it's something to think about.
I have spoken to many friends and businesses that have come to me saying that they had a backup of all their work files on an external hard drive, but the offices got flooded and the hard drives are now destroyed. – Did the backup work? Not quite L
Along with temporarily backing up your files on these external hard drives, also consider backing up your files off site, using some of the methods below:
- Cloud Services, such as Carbonite, Sugarsync, Crashplan:
- Of site servers
- Hosting services
- Online applications such as DropBox & Google Docs
By paying a bit extra for backing up your important files off site, in a secure environment, your not just protecting your customers details, but also protecting your business, if a disaster was to strike.
4 Benefits of online backing up Solutions
- Security: most of the online backing up services are highly secure, with encryption, and also the sites where theses files are stored, also have high level of security in place.
- Availability: Your backed up data is available 24/7 through out the year, you can retrieve your data from any location you prefer, you may be abroad on a meeting, and your laptops given in, you can easily go to a internet café, access your backed up files, and restore them back where required. – This is just one scenario, I’m sure you get the idea J
- Automated: By using a backing up solution, the work is done for you atomically, so you don’t have to worry about backing up your documents.
- Cost: You may think it will cost you a lot to subscribe to such services, in fact, it doesn’t cost much, most subscriptions are round about $5 per month, also depends on how much storage you require. You also have services such as Google Docs, and DropBox, which you can activate for Free.
- 70% Of Businesses That Suffer A Major Data Loss Are Out Of Business Within 18 Months Source: DTI
- 30% of all businesses that have a major fire go out of business within a year. 70% fail within five years. (Home Office Computing Magazine)
- 31% of PC users have lost all of their files due to events beyond their control.
- American business lost more than $7.6 billion as a result of viruses during first six months of 1999. (Research by Computer Economics)
What do I do….
I take extra persecution to backup all the files I have, and worked on, just incase I need them for a rainy day. I use:
- DropBox Subscription Service: for my general day to day documents
- Google Documents: I store files, which I don’t need on my figure tips, but occasionally I need to access them.
- Evernote: To backup letters received and sent, in PDF, which is easily searchable.
- Remote Server: Upload all work related and personal documents onto a remote sever.
- Hard Drives: Besides all the above, all the files are also backup on 3 Encrypted External Hard Drives, which one is taken off site, and CDs for each customer.
All I can say is better to be safe than sorry.
Please share your views in the comments below, how do you backup your important files.