Many businesses underestimate just how important it is to backup their corporate data. Over the years, we’ve heard of many horror stories where individuals or businesses suffer from data loss and have not have a reliable backup solution in place to recover it from!
Many prospects we’ve met either don’t implement any kind of backup solution, don’t know if they have a backup solution or otherwise utilize cloud services such as GSuite and Office 365 so automatically assume their data is safe! Whilst most cloud hosts do offer a level of redundancy, these are not always as fall proof or work as you’d expect. We’d always recommend the familiar 3 – 2 – 1 rule for backup regardless of whether you use cloud or local data storage. This strategy is to keep at least 3 copies of your data, storing 2 backup copies on different storage media, with one of them located offsite.
Human Error & Physical Disasters
It’s important to remember that your data isn’t just open to online threats, it’s also vulnerable to internal mishaps such as accidental deletion and data overwrites. We often receive calls from clients who panic about having accidentally overwritten a file, or a computer crashed without saving a document! Using solutions like OneDrive or SharePoint is a great way to combat those issues as they allow for saving ‘as you go’ or version history control to jump back to a previous version of specific files.
At the same time, it’s also easy to overlook some of the more conventional physical threats your business faces, such as theft, fire or flood. These factors could easily wipe out your entire business network and its data should you not have reliable backup or DR plan in place. Likewise, many people forget that hard drives can become corrupt and suffer from failures. Therefore, implementing a backup solution is vital and should be considered an integral part of your business plan.
Cyber Attackers, Viruses and Ransomware
Hackers and ransomware outbreaks are certainly making headlines with old-fashioned viruses and malware attacks continuing to be among the leading reasons for system breaches and data loss. Data is like gold to hackers… once they have access to it they typically exploit it, or hold onto it permanently and charge a ransom to give it back. Implementing the 3-2-1 backup rule ensures data will always be recoverable should you ever be in this unfortunate position and need to do so. We’d never recommend paying ransoms for your data – The best method for recoveing your data would be from a backup repository.
With the continuous amount of cyber threats emerging, it’s more than likely that your business has already been a victim, or will become a victim to a cyber attack in the future. Attackers are constantly finding new and clever methods to access and control your information. Security around your data…we’ll save that topic for another blog as that’s a whole conversation of its own!
Whilst adding in security solutions such as email filters, anti-malware and anti-virus software is a good starting place to protect your business, most businesses still remain exposed to losing data from hackers, malware and ransomware (with the most common entry point being caused by human error).
How to Backup Your Data
There are various ways to backup your data. Each is going to have its own procedures and depends on your working environment eg. Are you running physical servers? Are your servers virtualized? Do you replicate your servers? Do you require local or manual backups? Is your data cloud based already and so on… It’s important to determine which method is best for you/your business and consider costs and convenience between cloud storage vs local.
The more places you store data, the better your chances are of being able to restore it when needed. Don’t feel like you have to choose between locally storing your data and backing it up to the cloud. Why not do both?
- Cloud storage offers a number of advantages compared to local storage. Cloud backups are secure offsite copies of data that are stored on remote servers, and accessed via an internet connection. In the event of a physical disaster, you’d typically not be able to recover damaged data unless it was backed up to the cloud.
Pros/Cons of Cloud Storage
As soon as you save an important file to your computer, you can automatically set your cloud system to backup the file.
You can share and work on files at the same time as other users, therefore improving workflow and accessibility.
Downtime can be a big factor to consider when deciding whether to use cloud computing for your business. Service slowdowns occur a lot, therefore can your business afford to lose temporary access to its data in the event of an outage?
- An easy way to backup business data is to store multiple copies on local hard drives, tape drives, network attached storage systems, USB drives or other storage devices connected to your systems or network. These are easy and efficient solutions, however can be costly if they become corrupt or suffer from hardware failure.
Pros/Cons of Local Storage
The data stored on a local drive can be accessed almost immediately.
The user does not require an internet connection to access files and documents stored on local drive. Meaning users can access files on the go.
Locally storing your business data means resilience on the on-premise hardware. Local threats such as access, hardware corruption, user intervention and theft may have to be considered.
Cases of Data Loss
The JPMorgan Data Breach
The 2014 JPMorgan Chase data breach was a cyber-attack against the US bank, that was believed to have compromised data associated with over 83 million customer accounts. The firm had failed to upgrade one of its servers with 2-step authentication, leaving it open to attacks from hackers. Had JPMorgan implemented the dual password security measure, the hackers would’ve found it much more difficult to gain access, and therefore would’ve most likely prevented them from accessing millions of customers confidential data.
The eBay Cyber Attack
The online marketplace reported a cyber attack in May 2014, and claimed that hackers got into the company network using the credentials of three corporate employees. The hackers had account access for 229 days, in which they were able to make their way into the user database. Overall, the hackers exploited names, addresses, dates of birth and even encrypted passwords.
Our Tech Team partner with many different backup vendors and use the most suited service to match your business’s requirements. If you want to find out how we can help you implement an efficient and reliable data backup solution, please feel free to drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or give us at call on 020 3794 1414 to discuss this more.