It only takes one equipment melt-down, computer theft, hurricane, landslide, fire or other data disaster to immediately see the value of protecting your data from harm. And yet, according to a recent survey by IDC, three out of five businesses of your size still do not regularly back-up data.
When faced with the feat of creating and implementing a data back-up system, many business owners are overwhelmed by the task and never put any kind of data protection plan into action. According to the Institute for Business and Home Safety, the unfortunate result is that when disaster strikes, at least a quarter of businesses of your size that are closed by the event aren’t able to recover enough data to open again.
Most owners of businesses of your size know that they should back-up their data, but they put it off because of the initial investment in time and money seems high. The hardest part is deciding that today is the day to start, regardless of the initial cost.
A local technology consultant can help you to figure out what you need, set it up and develop a system to make sure you will always have access to the information that allows your business to run smoothly. That may mean that instead of spending money on frantic emergency data recovery services you can spend your money on someone who can explain a number of affordable and efficient ways for you to be proactive in maintaining the integrity of your data by backing it up data and guarding against the risk of losing important information.
Sometimes establishing backup priorities seems to be an onerous task, and here at ITSPA, we’ve established a checklist of things to think about before you start. They’ll make things easier as you develop your backup plan.
- Know the rules for your industry. Many have requirements for keeping records, and you need to know what to keep, in what form, and for how long so you can make sure that your backup plan supports those rules.
- Decide how often you need to back-up your data by completing this sentence: In the event of an emergency, my business would be able to operate with recovered data from:
- Last month
- Last week
- 10 minutes ago
- Establish your strategy. Data back-up can be done in a number of ways, from nightly tape records to continual transfer of data to off-site storage terminals. Some solutions can even be set up to automatically back-up data every time you log on and off the computer or every time you change a file.
- Document your plan because in case of emergency you’ll want to make sure all key employees know how and where to retrieve data.
If you work with a solution provider to develop the most efficient, cost effective and secure back-up plan, you’ll probably be better off. ITSPA can help you find a local service provider who knows your business and knows how to protect your important information from emergency, accident and security breaches. You can contact ITSPA at firstname.lastname@example.org to locate a qualified solution provider in your area.
Russell Morgan is president of Information Technology Solution Providers Alliance (ITSPA), a group of consultants and resellers serving the small business community.