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Reviewing Your Company’s Backup and Recovery Plan   no comments

Posted at Apr 3, 2018 @ 11:00am backup

Backup and Recovery Plan

Is your company prepared for a catastrophe that could result in the loss of your data? You’ve most likely taken out insurance to protect yourself against natural disasters, robberies and similar catastrophic events. Your data should be no different. The only difference is that this type of insurance involves backing up your data and IT infrastructure, so that your business remains online and operational, even during one of those catastrophic situations mentioned above or something like a hardware failure or a disastrous infection. Here are some key things to focus on when reviewing your company’s existing plan or during the development of a new one:

 

What to Back Up

Determining what needs to be backed up should be addressed before you look at how you back it up. Do you want to back up everything that is located on computers at the office? What about data located on laptops or cellphones that are taken to and from home? Is your email or website backed up? Do you want them to be? Do you possess physical forms and documents that you want scanned into electronic form and then backed up in that form so that you are set if something such as a fire or flood destroys the hard copies?

You can back up everything, otherwise known as a full backup. This obviously requires the most storage space as well as the most time. However, it helps ensure that you will be completely back up and running in a timely manner if some disaster causes your primary data source to no longer be accessible.

However, this is not always necessary. In that case, consider an incremental or partial backup. An incremental backup involves the backing up of only files that had been created or changed since the last time your data had been backed up. This tends to be much quicker, but you do need to then ensure that you have access to several incremental backups in order to fully restore your data. It can also be difficult to organize your files or to find a specific one if you are downloading several incremental backups after disaster struck.

A partial backup means that you are only backing up part of your data, presumably the most valuable portion. However, the difference between a partial backup and a complete backup is usually minimal, meaning that, with a few exceptions, you might as well just back up everything.

Focus initially on the most important data, whatever would cause the most damage were the information to become inaccessible. These files should also be backed up more often. Of course, it does take time and money to back up your information, but it is well worth it when you consider the repercussions of losing access to it for a considerable time period or forever.

 

Local / Onsite Backups

Local or onsite backups involve copying and storing your data on a server or drive that is located on the same premises as your primary data source. The most significant benefit of this plan is that you can always have your secondary data right there. If something happens to your primary computer system, it’s normally easy to start utilizing the backup sources, and you don’t need to have an internet connection to do so. The cost of utilizing this type of data backup is usually relatively low, and the process of backing up your data with this method is normally pretty simple.

However, several significant disadvantages exist as well. A natural disaster such as a flood or hurricane that destroys your office or original data source will often take out your backup data too if it’s being kept onsite. And if somebody breaks in and steals your primary data, doing the same to your secondary data too can be done on the same trip.

 

Cloud Backup

Those taking advantage of cloud backup options will have their data sent to a remote data center on a regular basis. Probably the most significant benefit of going this route is that multiple copies of your data will can be made to stored on multiple servers located in a variety of places. That way if something disastrous happened to one place or server where your backup data was stored, you could simply access an alternate. Your data is safe at these locations as it is encrypted before being stored, and you have instantly scalable storage capacity. Another benefit is being able to automate the process so that you are not dependent on somebody remembering to back up the data.

An indirect benefit of utilizing a cloud backup method is that those who are authorized to do so can easily access the data, whether they are located across town or even on the other side of the world. This is a great benefit for organizations with multiple locations or remote staff. It’s also generally more cost effective than backing up your data onsite, due to not needing to purchase your own backup equipment.  However, make sure that you research and trust the data center provider you are using to back up your data remotely.

 

Cloud Replication

Cloud Replication allows for the restoration of data to a virtualized server. Utilizing an off-site data center’s cloud infrastructure, data can be made available instantly, then accessed remotely from anywhere in the world over multiple, redundant, high speed networks. This removes the bottleneck of local internet service providers bandwidth availability, and saves potentially hours of business critical time by bypassing the need to wait for your onsite systems to restore and be back in working order.

Should a disaster occur in which your infrastructure is no longer available or accessible to be restored, the need to purchase new hardware can be completely eliminated. Utilizing a Cloud Replication solution can have your business back online in minutes, not days. Employees can continue their work from home, remotely accessing images of their old workstations running live in the cloud, ensuring your business does not skip a beat.

 

Whether it be an office fire, hardware failure, employee error, or malware infection, IT disasters are inevitable. That’s why it is critical that you have a plan in place. Don’t gamble with your company’s data, call TurnKey Internet at 518-618-0999 and receive a free consultation of your company’s Disaster Recovery Plan. Learn more at www.TurnKeyInternet.net/myplan

 

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Written by David Maurer on April 3rd, 2018

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