If a business is in operation today, it needs to have preparations in order to protect itself and its data from potential disasters—a fact that has only become more pressing as digital data has become the norm. Let’s take a few moments to go over what today’s businesses need to include in their disaster recovery preparations to ensure that their data remains protected.
In short, today’s businesses run on data. Customer information, financial records, employee records, vendor agreements, and every aspect of a business’ operations are reliant on data. This is precisely what makes data loss so dangerous. Making the situation even worse, data loss can come from a variety of circumstances, from natural disasters to cyberattacks and everything in between, at any time, potentially crushing a company’s finances and operations alike.
A disaster recovery strategy, with a solid data backup supporting it, is so critical for this reason.
The whole point of a data backup is to ensure you have access to all of your critical data even after a data loss event. It’s meant to be your saving grace if something threatens your capability to continue operations.
Data backup gives you the ability to:
Unfortunately, data loss is pervasive and prevalent, which means it can happen in all ways and at all times. It’s important that you keep these threat factors in mind so that you can prepare yourself properly:
Keeping these scenarios in mind can help you create disaster recovery strategies that will mitigate them. In a data loss situation, time is of the essence, so you need to be sure that you are prepared to recover it rapidly and efficiently.
Hopefully, it’s clear how essential a proper data backup is to your business, as a means of both maintaining your operations and as a means of protecting your all-important data. A well-planned backup strategy is one that follows the following practices:
Your backup only protects the data it includes, which means you need to regularly update the data there to ensure that the latest version of everything you need is successfully backed up. Fortunately, automated backups can be scheduled to take complete snapshots of your business’ data at regular and specific intervals.
When you think about how valuable a complete collection of your business’ data would be to a cybercriminal, securing your backup should be a no-brainer. Encrypting all data while it is stored is a necessity, as is authenticating all access through the use of passwords, biometrics, or identification cards.
A backup that doesn’t allow you to restore your data isn’t really a backup. You need to regularly test your restoration processes—ideally, operating entirely off of your backups—and keep an eye on your backup system itself to catch issues and resolve them.
The 3-2-1 rule is a concept meant to guide your backup practices to ensure that your backups remain redundant, reliable, and available to you. It breaks down into the following: (at least) three copies of your data, stored in (at least) two different places, (at least) one of which is offsite to greatly reduce the likelihood of permanent data loss.
With your backup squared away, you also need a comprehensive disaster recovery plan that outlines how it is to be put to use—among many, many other key considerations that should be involved in this plan. What procedures need to be followed when data recovery is necessary, or if hardware needs to be restored or your data migrated?
As you might imagine, data backup is critical to the success of your business continuity measures. Therefore, having the best practices in place to make your business continuity as successful as it needs to be is, in a word, essential. Your backup strategy needs to meet all the requirements of your business, ensure everything is tested regularly and secured, and your entire disaster recovery plan is fully documented.
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