You may not always realize it, but your precious computer data is always under threat of theft, ransomware and other malware. And given the pace at which data is accumulated and updated, manual backup is not an option in this day and age. What you need, therefore, is to backup your data automatically and continuously, without fail, so that any unforeseen event doesn’t lead to such data loss that you can’t retrieve. Given the mine of information you end up storing on your computer, especially if you’re running a small business, just the thought of theft, damage or misplacement of the same can drive you crazy. What if you lose all that crucial data, on which your business stands? Even if you were to start getting the information in place again it’s not going to happen overnight, and you’d end up losing vital time, and possibly clients, in the meantime.
Backup, thus, is a crucial aspect of business operations. In fact, it’s as critical as having data in the first place, if not more. Given the multitude of threats your data faces day and in day out, it’s important to have a backup that keeps your files updated at all times, within easy access, where you can lay your hands on them immediately, without delay.
As mentioned, shifting and copying your files to an external hard drive is a time-consuming process, which you may end up avoiding more often than not. Also, you can do the manual backup only once a day, at best, and possibly not even that. So you need an automatic backup to ensure that your backup files are always updated. Real-time backup makes good business sense as it ensures you always have access to the most recent and updated files.
Automatic backup is also possible on an external hard drive, just as manual backup. The only problem with this is that you need to have access to the hard drive to be able to access the backup. If you’re looking to access backup from anywhere, at any time, which is what you should ideally be able to do, then it’s the online automatic backup route you need to take. This simply means you should go for a Cloud-based backup, which, incidentally and importantly, is also a more secure backup system.
Dropbox, Google Drive and OneDrive are some of the Cloud-based online backup systems you can use. They provide limited free storage but if you require higher storage you can purchase it for a monthly fee.
One great benefit of these is that you can access your files anywhere, from any computer system, and also share them with family, friends, colleagues and others.
It’s important to note that backup requires certain care to ensure optimal use of the backup space. After all, there’s limited free storageand Cloud backup comes for a price. So every little bit of space saved is a few cents saved automatically. You could try compression to save backup space in a hard disk. It’s easy and simple, requiring little effort on your part, which is also compensated for by the gains you accrue. What’s more, it also helps improve performance of the drive, making it more efficient.
Then there’s the ease of restoration that you need to consider. It’s not enough to have your files stored as backup in a hard drive or out there in Cloud. You should be able to quickly retrieve and use them the moment you need them. Otherwise, you’ll lose out on some of the advantage coming from backup. So look for a backup system that provides ease of restoration of the data back into your computer.
Finally, there’s really no point in having a backup system that’s not 100 per cent secure. If the backup system is vulnerable and exposed to risks you might as well no go for it. It’s better to lose your sensitive data than to put it out where it can be misused and exploited in any way. Financial-linked data, such as that related to credit and debit card details, is particularly prone to such exploitation and needs to be completely secured, even in backup form. That’s where the security of your backup comes in. It’s an issue that you definitely need to address if don’t want to lose your data to criminals.
Automatic and continuous backup, in real time, is not a matter of choice but of necessity, especially for small businesses, which don’t have the luxury of having a large and foolproof, secure network system. Ideally, as discussed, it’s an online Cloud-based backup you need for your data. If needed, you should purchase such backup. Just be sure that’s it accessible to you as and where you need it. Don’t compromise on the security of the backup either; remember your entire business is at stake.
Data backup is as vital to your business reputation, interest and growth as its other operational aspects. Any laxity in this regard can cost you heavily. As a small business owner, who is painstakingly building his business step by step, data loss can prove to be a major setback, which you can ill-afford to suffer. Hence, be ready with your backup plan, always. And be sure your data backup is within your easy reach so that you don’t lose out on precious time trying to retrieve it in case of theft, malware or other emergency.