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Essentially data backups have two main purposes. The main purpose is to recover data lost either by data deletion or corruption. The second purpose is to recover data from an earlier time for some expressed reason or policy you have in place.
The first, data loss, can be especially devastating if it’s your customer database or financial records. Whether it is lost due to a computer crash or virus corruption, it doesn’t really matter – it can be costly.
That’s why a data backup strategy should be given high priority.
Here are some considerations for a backup strategy:
Plan for data backup
First question to ask yourself is where will you keep your backup – off-site or online?
Storing files on an external hard drive that is rotated off-site is a less expensive option for many businesses, but the chance for human error is greater.
An off-site solution helps prevent data loss due to theft, or natural disasters like fires or floods.For instance, if you live in Winnipeg, the regular flooding of the Red River should be a clue not to store your data in the office basement.
In short, given the potential for a natural or human-created disaster, ask yourself how easy would it be to get to your data if disaster struck?
Have a data backup routine
Once you have a plan in place decide on a routine.
Like checking your email and handling customer requests, make backing-up your data a normal part of your regular routine.
Plus, you shouldn’t rely on anyone else to back up your data other than you; it’s just too important for the health of your business (and you should definitely keep control of backing up your critical data).
Tailor your backup strategy to your needs
You have a plan and a routine in place, now ask yourself how often your data changes. The answer will help you choose how often is often enough to backup. If your data changes weekly, a daily backup might be too much. If you have critical data that updates every hour, you probably need to back up several times a day .
Full backups aren’t always required. Incremental backups can be done between full backup schedules. An incremental backup will only back up files that have changed since the last full backup.
For example, if you run an incremental backup at the end of each work day, it protects all your newest data if anything happens overnight, and all of the data not backed up by the incremental backup is still protected by the full backup you may run every weekend.
Do you have a backup plan in place? How has it worked for you? Your thoughts are always welcome, so let us know!
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