Investing in business backup data efforts is worthwhile for your company. While it may seem like an extra step, it’s essential to protecting your company’s information and overall business workflow. Understanding the importance of data backup and recovery keeps your business secure and efficient.
How companies back up their data can influence their workflows, minimize network downtime and protect them from significant cybersecurity risks. When you implement business data backup processes, you can optimize your recovery time after an issue and help protect your data from a breach. Let’s consider why backing up data is essential for your business and how you can implement best practices on-site.
Who Should Back Up Their Computer and Data?
All companies should prioritize backing up data, but it is an urgent concern for small- and medium-sized businesses. The risks of not backing up data can significantly impact daily operations for smaller companies, so being proactive and keeping your information secure is even more critical. You want to be prepared long before you face a threat, so you’re equipped if an unforeseen situation, such as a cyber threat or hacking, occurs.
Stacking up computers and data is urgent for small- to medium-sized businesses. Transaction records, sensitive customer information, and critical business data are essential to supporting your business. If you encounter a security threat, you are more vulnerable to extended downtime — and potentially costly ramifications — because you don’t have as much capital to recover data as a smaller business.
Risks Involved With Not Backing Up Business Data
Businesses can face several pitfalls when they don’t put resources and consideration into backing up their data. They are more vulnerable to various security threats from internal or external sources. You’ll want to be aware of these risks to create the right strategy and protect your company.
Hackers, Viruses, and Ransomware
Some primary threats to data storage include hackers, viruses, and ransomware attacks on businesses. Many activities can make your company vulnerable to these threats, as hackers and malware can target your systems at any time. If an employee mistakenly clicks a link or a hacker actively gets into your accounts, they could fully expose your data to exploitation and distribution on the internet.
Hackers and ransomware can be difficult to address and recover from without the right systems, so you need to invest in securing your data before one of these threats tries to access your company’s information.
User or Administration Error
A user or administrator could also make a mistake that exposes your data to cyber threats or accidentally removes data. If a user does not keep sensitive information confidential or unintentionally deletes or moves critical data, it could risk your company and administration.
You must ensure proper access restrictions and maintain rigorous checks and balances to catch user errors that could wipe out your data. You can promptly recover data with a sound backup system, even if a user might have compromised it on your primary hard drive.
Computer Malfunction, Damage, or Theft
A range of damages or other physical issues could occur to your computers, limiting your access to data.
Suppose you only have your critical business data in one physical location. In that case, risks such as a sudden malfunction, fire and flood damage, or theft could permanently cause you to lose the client and transactional information.
To help secure your data, ensure it’s backed up and accessible from another location. That way, even if you lose access to a computer system, you’ll still be able to retrieve your key information and keep it secure.
What Type of Data Needs to Be Backed Up?
You likely work with critical information that you may need to access at any time and keep confidential. You should back up several data types you use daily to protect their integrity. Keep these information types in mind as you consider your backup processes.
Company Personal Records
One vital concern is your company’s records. Confidential employee information, such as social security numbers, full names, birth dates, and addresses, is susceptible, and you must ensure it stays secure. Consider where you’re storing this information and ensure you can access it even if your computer is damaged or stolen.
A range of administration documents requires careful management and security. These may include contracts, business plans, employment agreements, bylaws, and other confidential information.
You need these documents to operate compliantly and effectively, so you’ll want to ensure they’re securely backed up. Be sure this data stays private and cannot be shared or exploited online, and confirm that you can access it even if you encounter a security issue.
Your financial data may include sensitive information on your business transactions, banking accounts, and customers’ payment methods. You must keep this information secure to prevent hackers or malware from stealing financial information and raising costs on your or your client’s accounts.
Consider your preventative measures carefully to keep this information safe and backed up. If your main hard drive is compromised, you need to be able to quickly recover and assess lost financial data through a secure backup source.
Patents and Intellectual Property
Any intellectual property you may own requires multiple copies so you can access it in case of a security breach or computer damage. You may refer to these documents to demonstrate your rights to designs, products, or creative works. Having a backup of this information is vital to ensure you can access it whenever needed.
Your transactions for sales, money exchanges, equipment purchases, and more need to be secure and accessible anytime. Recording your previous purchases, client transactions, and other business activities is essential to supporting your ongoing success and addressing any disputes or issues. Use the proper backing-up practices to keep this data available and safe so you can refer to it later.
Your payment data includes sensitive financial information regarding your clients, so take time to secure it. You may need to reference this data again, and your business is responsible for keeping it confidential and safe. You must implement the proper backup practices to keep it secure and accessible even in unforeseen circumstances.
Data Backup Tips for Businesses
As you implement your business strategy, you’ll want to follow several best practices for data backup. Implementing these processes is essential to safeguarding your information and staying compliant.
When you can access your data from a secure location, you will be more confident in recovering it during a security threat, user error, or risk.
On-Site and Off-Site Data Backup Strategies
You have two main options for data backup approaches — on-site and off-site. On-site backups ensure you have multiple copies of key files and data at your business location, whether on another computer or a storage server. You’ll be able to recover data with on-site backup sources, so this option is an excellent solution if your other system faces a cybersecurity threat or user error.
However, off-site backup is also crucial if your business’s physical location is compromised. For example, if a fire occurs, you’ll want to have data backups on-site and in a removed area. You may choose to store and access this data manually or through the cloud.