In a year with no shortage of natural calamities, from a one-thousand-year flood in Houston to the current wildfires overwhelming California, we’re again reminded of the necessity to think about where we house and store our digital assets and critical business data.
While having the appropriate insurance policies in place is an important piece of rebuilding a business after a disaster event, no amount of insurance coverage can replace data that’s been lost when your on-premise computers or hard drives have been completely destroyed in a flood or fire.
The wildfires in northern California have already claimed over 2,000 structures, including a number of small and mid-sized businesses, from restaurants to wineries. For many businesses, the complete loss of data is much more difficult to recover from than the loss of physical assets, the former often leading to business failure. To ensure your critical data is always safe, even from a catastrophic event, here are a few tips to live by:
- Always know where your data is located (and remember that your data actually lives in a physical place). It’s easy to forget that data doesn’t live in some abstract universe that you can just forget about. Is your critical business data stored on a computer in the office? On a server in the back closet? Is there a copy of your data somewhere? Where is your data backed up to?
- Backup your data offsite, in a secure facility. There is no reason, in 2017, that all of your business data can’t be backed up to “the cloud” cost effectively, no matter how small your business might be.
- Even better, store ALL of your data remotely, in a secure data center. With the rise of “virtual desktops,” none of your business computing or storage happens on your physical device. If your computers are lost, stolen, or destroyed, none of your data would be impacted. If you keep server infrastructure on premise, cloud providers can cost effectively manage your services in a secure facility with their own backup solution.
- Have a disaster recovery plan. It’s one thing to back up your data, but another to recover from a disaster. What steps are needed to recovery your data and IT systems, and how long would that take? Where will your data be recovered to? How effectively can your IT team or technology partner recover critical services?
Ultimately, your business will need to prepare for a disaster event. Your key takeaways are: know where your data is, be sure it’s backed up somewhere secure and offsite, and have a disaster recovery plan.
Contact Newtek Technology Solutions to learn how we can better protect your critical business data.