Why is data backup for business so crucial? Well, the following statistics appear to say it best; a staggering 93% of businesses who lose their data for just 10 days fail within the following 12 months. And only 6% of businesses that do not have a disaster recovery plan survive long term. Those are pretty scary statistics but we must remember we are and have been for a long time in the information age. Data is information, and information is everything today more than ever. So, clearly many businesses need to change the way they think – instead of simply worrying about a potential disaster, you need to prepare for a disaster, and more importantly how quickly you can recover from it and resume normal operations. As Benjamin Franklin once said “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Therefore if your business fails to implement the correct solution for your data problem in the first instance, you will not be able to recover your most valuable data assets when a disaster strikes.
Back in the day, businesses most often stored their data on magnetic tapes in a tape drive located in the local server. They would be extracted from the building and stored remotely until they would be needed. In many cases, especially for the smaller business, an employee would take the tape home with them – this inevitably lead to data becoming lost, or not being easily available when you needed.
The wider issue with this backup methods were that the tapes and the process could be unreliable. They were highly susceptible to failure and corruption – which could easily occur. Sometimes, the tapes were not changed which caused major problems with version control. In some cases, backups never occured at all, meaning fresh data would not be able to be restored if a disaster happened.
Tape backup was also limited by the maximum size of the media you could purchase, resulting in not all data being backed up. Data in business is growing constantly, (we’ve all heard the Big Data debate) – so businesses need a solution that can grow at the same rate as they do. In addition, many businesses underestimate the time it would take to restore the data. Often or not, when the data was restored, some files fail due to corruption.
This is where cloud backup comes in.
Unlike older backup methods, data is still stored locally but then backed up with a completely automated process to a secure datacentre. Today’s datacentres offer far higher security levels than that achievable from any typical in-house infrastructure. UK datacentres, that comply with ISO-27001, ensure that all of your data is safe within their data halls through a number of different security level, appliances and protocols the like of which you simply do not implement on premise. These datacentres are often equipped with military grade security and use highly advanced firewalls and protection systems to ensure that the data uploaded to the cloud stays where it should be and is free from external access.
The cloud can also deliver faster recovery speeds! When a disaster happens, businesses need to know that the data can be quickly recovered and restored. In addition, the data that is backed up to the datacentre is then backed up to a second datacentre known as a failover. These two backup copies ensure that the data has the maximum level of protection and recoverability.
Cloud backup makes better use of IT resources. IT departments can prioritise their other business strategies and challenges instead of focusing on manual backup processes, leveraging their current hardware such as computers and servers with a backup solution, creating a seamless transition between in-house technologies and cloud technologies, to create an almost hybrid cloud backup solution for their business where all the data is synchronised both on premise and offsite.
Businesses with cloud technology are also more future proof as tape backup, along with external hard drives, are either obsolete or can be damaged easily if they’re not stored in the correct environment. In addition, they can also be stolen from the premise or damaged in natural disasters such as floods or fires. This means that in the event of a disaster, the data cannot be recovered.
Cloud backup works automatically, is instantly scalable and cost effective. Businesses can back up as much as they need and only pay for what they use and if they need more backup space then they simply pay for the amount extra they need. This gives businesses the flexibility and scalability they need.
Cloud backup has today become the norm for businesses that aim to thrive in today’s fast paced world. It combine’s latest technologies with in-house servers and workstations delivering a simple solution that can be tailored to meet the needs of business.
The cloud is the direction many are going, but no matter what you do about backup and recovery, do something sooner rather than too later, and do your research to make sure the solution you choose meets your needs!
Find out more about how backup can help your small business with our free guide