You may have heard the mantras of “back everything up” and “if you have one, you have none” – but not everyone takes these mantras as seriously as they should. Frankly, not everyone knows why they need more than one copy or why they need to backup in the first place. The fact is, data loss can be a disaster for a small businesses, large businesses, and even individuals. Here are the top five reasons why you should, indeed, keep regular backups.
This might include crashes, malware, physical damage or failure, theft, or basic user error. If you claim you have never deleted a vital file by mistake then you are probably lying or seldom use a computer (there is a reason deleted files go to a trash folder before vanishing completely). Laptops make you particularly vulnerable – they can be damaged or stolen, especially while traveling. Incremental backups allow you to restore either specific files or your entire system easily.
The IRS requires that you keep receipts for deductible expenses for three years. States may have other rules, and there may be other regulations on archiving. Financial records, in particular, should be kept. And no, regulatory commissions don’t care why you don’t have the data. Also, if you work with clients, especially in finance, keeping good records can make you very popular when their computer crashes and they don’t have backups.
If your region experiences a disaster, then the first business to open their doors again can and will steal customers from those who are still recovering. Make sure that your most critical data is backed up to a different location, ideally in a different state or region. Having a disaster recovery plan helps too – your data does you no good if your physical business cannot reopen, but you also need an IT disaster recovery plan, especially if you live somewhere where weather or earthquakes are an issue.
Forty-three percent of businesses that suffer a major data loss never reopen. It can be as bad as having a fire in your store. And major data loss can happen, again, for the silliest reasons. If you have no business, you can’t pay your employees, who will then go elsewhere. As will your customers, in droves. Good backups will keep downtime to a minimum both by preserving your data and by saving time wasted on recovery.
If you have a data loss, you will have to work to fix it. This might be as annoying as having to rewrite an important email because your computer crashed right before you hit sent, or as serious as rebuilding your entire client database. While you or your employees are working on data recovery, you are not working on the core of your business. Some companies might have to redo everything. Literally everything – and few businesses survive that.
For these five reasons – and simply for peace of mind – you should follow the best practices to backup critical data. Incremental local backups are the best plan for less critical information, but the most important data – financial data, client details, etc, should be backed up to a cloud location at a good geographical distance. If you use a laptop, make sure everything on it is backed up to a desktop or other storage regularly in case of theft, loss, or damage. Backing up your data is vital for your company’s future and success.
If you need to know more about backing up your company’s data and thus ensuring its survival, contact Otava. We offer custom, high-performance, secure cloud solutions for data backup and disaster recovery and will make sure that your company’s data is kept safe against that time when you need it.
Otava provides the secure, compliant hybrid cloud solutions demanded by service providers, channel partners and enterprise clients in compliance-sensitive industries. By actively aggregating best-of-breed cloud companies and investing in people, tools, and processes, Otava’s global footprint continues to expand. The company provides its customers in highly regulated disciplines with a clear path to transformation through its effective solutions and broad portfolio of hybrid cloud, data protection, disaster recovery, security and colocation services, all championed by an exceptional support team. Learn more at www.otava.com.