Your business data is important – as any website offering a backup solution will tell you. They will also tell you the benefits that their particular offering will give you, such as data security, ease of use, speed and low cost - and why their solution is the best!
So how do you choose the right solution?
To answer that question, we need to look at the most important, yet often neglected question: WHY should you back up your data?
The next time you get into your car, rev your engine to around 5000rpm and hold it there for a short while. Get used to the sound, the vibration, the “feel” of 5000rpm. Because inside your computer is a thin sliver of magnetic material that is rotating at a minimum of 5000rpm – and some rotate at up to 3x that speed!
It's easy to forget that a computer's hard disk is a mechanical device. And although hard disks are usually very reliable, they are not immune to mechanical failure or physical damage. At best, any disk failure is extremely inconvenient; when you replace a hard disk in a computer, you generally need to reinstall all the software you need on a day-to-day basis. However, if all of your business data was on the failed disk and you don't have a backup, you are in for some sleepless nights.
It is estimated that around 30% of incidents involving data loss are caused by human error. That includes: accidentally deleting files, overwriting a file with another of the same name or with an older copy, loss (including theft) or damage of a laptop, etc. If the data is backed up regularly, then you may be faced with the loss of just one day's work. But if you have no (recent) backup then the loss could be more serious.
Some companies believe they don't need to worry about loss of data because they have an IT department, or an IT support company, who will be able to retrieve anything that's been lost. While it's true that IT Support people are generally very resourceful and can resolve a vast array of issues, there are limits to what they can do when faced with the physical failure of a piece of hardware such as a disk drive. Of course they can replace it with a new one and get you back up and running – but they may not be able to retrieve anything from the failed disk.
Even if a disk fails, all is not necessarily lost. There are specialist data recovery companies who can recover data from disks that have failed and even from disks that have been physically damaged. But such services don't come cheap: the average cost of recovering data from a failed disk is around £250 - £300 and in extreme cases can be as much as ten times that amount. Recovering data also takes time and you could be without your files & folders for several weeks. How would that affect your business?
When it comes to protecting your business - and your wallet - prevention is better than cure.
Clearly then, it's important to ensure that your business-critical data – the files, folders, databases, documents, spreadsheets, etc. that you positively cannot do without – are backed up regularly. In the next article, we'll look at choosing the right backup solution for your business. In the meantime, if you wish to discuss how best to protect your business data, contact us today.