Running a business is more than setting your own schedule and crushing it daily. It’s hard! Over 50% of small businesses fail within a few years, with one of the main reasons being data disasters.
In the world of business, it seems you’ve either lost your data or will lose your data. Considering 90% of small businesses without a data backup and recovery plan fail after a data disaster, it’s a good idea to have one!
A successful business is a compilation of hard work and lessons learned, but sometimes it can feel like the world is out to get your business. Avoidable bumps on the road like data disasters can end-up being treacherous potholes, wrecking your business’ success. A longstanding business in the digital age accumulates a ton of data over time.
Plan for Data Backup of Typical Business Data:
- Day-to-day schedule
- Private patient information/customer records
- Personal photos/videos
- Financial records/accounting information
- HR/Sales records
- Any other critical information you can’t afford to be without
Technology is helpful and makes running your business a lot easier. Whether it’s Microsoft Office files or your email inbox, you expect your critical data to be where it was when you closed shop yesterday. But what happens when your business experiences data loss? What do you do when an uncontrollable data disaster threatens your business continuity?
With a proper small business backup plan, you can confidently answer those questions.
Identifying Common Data Threats for the Data Recovery Plan
Common data threats include:
- Hardware failure
- Lost devices
- Data corruption or deletion
- Natural disasters
- Employee turnover and data leaks via staff access
- Outside extortions like ransomware, phishing scams, and other cyber attacks
There are many ways for your data to disappear, so making sure you have a backup strategy is essential. You’re a busy business owner, and it would be understandable if you haven’t had time to implement a backup plan. Time is money, and you’ve likely spent your time making money!
A data disaster doesn’t care if it’s halting a blossoming business.
One day it's business as usual, the next you’re cornered facing ransomware payments. Worse yet, you’re concentrated on running a business and likely are not a data disaster recovery expert! When the dust has settled and (hopefully) you’ve found a way to get a copy of your data and business is back to normal, you’ll likely find you’ve spent a lot more time and money recovering from the disaster than if you had properly prepared in the first place.
That’s why a data backup plan is crucial for ensuring the security of your data and the longevity of your business.
Here’s the good news: 96% of companies survive ransomware attacks if they have a proper backup disaster plan. If your business doesn’t have a data recovery plan in place, or you don’t trust your current data backup solution (1 in 3 businesses that have a plan are still unprepared for a disaster), read on to learn more about how to properly prepare your business’ data backup plan!
Which kind of backup should you use?
Backup and recovery are the processes of replicating and archiving your business’ data to prepare for a loss and setting up methods to recover deleted or corrupted data.
They say variety is the spice of life, but did you know that varying where your business backs-up its data is the spice of an effective backup plan?
Because 99% of organizations use both laptops and desktops, backing up servers has become even more important. You probably already save important data to a device as part of your everyday work routine. Whether it’s a PowerPoint presentation, x-ray images, or an Excel document; your business likely creates new data to be stored daily.
Just keep in mind, devices like computers have limited storage space and are vulnerable to uncontrollable threats. If you only back up data to a device, something as ordinary as a cup of coffee in careless hands can be a data disaster for your business.
Having data stored in a single source is like playing with fire.
Should you use a Network Attached Storage system?
Since your business likely fills-up computer memory quickly, you may consider incorporating a Network Attached Storage (NAS) system. NAS systems are a form of local storage for everyone on your network to use. Here’s a review of the best NAS systems in 2019.
You’ll likely find NAS systems as local backups in businesses. They provide ample space for data storage from multiple users while also reading and writing efficiently, thus making backups and restores quicker.
NAS systems have their own hardware and operating system and remain onsite. They also utilize RAID arrays, which replicate data across a set of disks so if one fails your data remains intact elsewhere. You can add or remove hard drives as you please, for more or less storage.
But be careful! Just because your NAS system uses RAID arrays doesn’t mean you’re in the clear. It’s possible for RAID arrays to fail if multiple disks crash simultaneously. Backing up your business’ devices to an external source like a NAS system takes a little extra work and oversight, but is worth it!
If your computer suddenly lost its data, at least you have a local backup solution in place. Keep in mind, hardware like hard drives have a lifespan, and will eventually wear out. It’s important to use an enterprise-grade hard drive, just make sure it’s compatible with your NAS system. You can read up on the best NAS hard drives here.
Your eggs are still in one basket if you only backup locally.
Roughly 45% of unplanned downtime is due to hardware failure.
Backing up to a hard drive is still storing your valuable files onsite. If something were to happen to your business environment (like a flood or fire), your devices, NAS system, and hard drives could all be destroyed; leaving your business up a creek without a paddle.
Spreading out and duplicating your data locally, rather than solely on a device, is a good first step in your business’ data recovery plan. But don’t stop there. Your plan isn’t complete if it remains onsite.
Next step? The Cloud.
Backing-up to an offsite cloud service or online backup is the final step in ensuring your business can survive a data disaster. It’s crucial that your business’ data is backed-up offsite at a data center, in the event that your local backups cannot be accessed. Most cloud backups offer unlimited storage and start by backing up all your data then update new files and changes incrementally.
Other forms of offsite backup include tape and disk-based backups, but cloud-based storage services prove to be more cost-effective and less work.
If you run a business and don’t want to hassle with a bunch of disks and tapes, cloud backup is for you!
- The cloud is like an all-you-can-eat buffet, except it’s all-you-can-store. You never have to worry about filling a disk or tape.
- Backing up to the cloud is easy while filling disks and tapes and moving them from location to location is tedious.
- Simply set up your cloud backup and forget it. No need to worry about attaching additional expensive devices, drivers, or clunky tapes.
- Instead of spending a ton of money on IT staff, hardware, and upkeep, just back up your data in the cloud!
- With the cloud, the software can be arranged to automatically back up data with criteria you choose (time, changes, size, etc.).
- Your data can be encrypted to and from the cloud, keeping it safe from cyber threats and enabling disaster recovery solutions through transfer and storage.
Get comfy in the cloud with Central Data Storage.
Central Data Storage is a software company that offers UnisonBDR, a managed backup and recovery solution, that allows businesses to securely backup an unlimited number of files on an unlimited number of servers offsite. Any file, any version, on any device or server is always protected and available.
As a managed backup service, CDS handles your offsite backup, so you focus on running your business.
Central Data Storage’s 24/7 managed support includes:
- Setting up user accounts
- Automatically installing updates
- Monitoring backup progress
- Sending daily Backup Status Confirmation emails
- Remote troubleshooting
- Recovering files at no additional cost.
- And whatever you need help with!
In the event that your local data storage is compromised, it’s easy to connect with Central Data Storage to efficiently recover your files. You’ll be back up and runnning within 2 hours with full data restoration within a day! Additionally, CDS uses military grade 448-bit end-to-end encryption, so cyber-attackers can’t steal your business data in transport.
Want to try it out? Central Data Storage would love to work with you! Sign up here.
Ensuring the longevity of the business you’ve worked so hard to grow starts with protecting the data you’ve created along the journey. By combining multiple onsite backups with a secure offsite cloud backup, you’re setting your business up to survive any data disaster!
So how does your business’ data disaster recovery plan stack up? What are some roadblocks you face with implementing a strategy?