Systems backup plan

Information systems backup plan

backupSkyPoint Technologies recently published this article about business information systems backups.

Are you working on your computer system assuming that all your carefully entered information is magically secured and being backup up somewhere, somehow?  In the event of a serious system failure are you confident that all your information can be recovered?

Your critical business data is part of your competitive advantage in the marketplace and must be protected. 

We regularly come across businesses that believe they have a sound backup system in place.  Unfortunately, reality has proven otherwise.

These include:

  • Taking external hard drives or tapes off site (when staff remember); assuming the information is backed up on these devices.  Sadly we have found external devices completely blank, or corrupt with no recoverable business information on them.
  • Others have told us their backup is in the “cloud”, or replicated somewhere at another site.  However there is a misunderstanding as to how or what information is being backed up and how secure it is, let alone how to retrieve the information in the event of a system failure.

This is like playing Russian roulette with your company information.

SkyPoint suggestions?

  • Backup Integrity Testing – No matter what backup system is implemented, it must be tested and checked regularly. Simply receiving an email that your backup has successfully completed does not guarantee you actually have a backup.  Backup testing can vary from simple file recovery tests to full disaster recovery simulations, and is well worth carrying out long before you need them for real.
  • Offsite Backup Storage – Have some form of backup at another location.  A disaster such as a fire, flood, lightning or earthquake etc could mean that information stored at your premise may become inaccessible.  Many businesses in Christchurch couldn’t function after the earthquake because their information systems were either destroyed or not reachable.  This could have been avoided if their backup information was available elsewhere.
  • Image Based Backup Software – Ensure that your backup software is image based rather than file based. Imaged based backup software takes a snapshot of your complete system and makes data recovery a straight forward task.  File based backups only back up nominated files and folders, and not the whole system.  File backups are often implemented by external backup services available on the internet and requires a great deal more effort, time and money to rebuild.
  •  Hard Disk Backup Systems – Hard disk backup systems are an affordable and effective backup method.  Tape backup systems have been superseded by hard disks at the small to medium business end.  Unfortunately tape systems didn’t prove robust or reliable enough and required far greater time for data restoration.  Our recommendation is that if you still have a tape based system it is time to upgrade to a disk based system along with image based backup software.
  • Online Backups – The advent of uncapped ultrafast broadband has allowed image based backups to be sent to external locations.  These Online Backup systems are an excellent added safeguard to business information and are cost effective and efficient.  In summary, a good backup system could be the making or breaking of your business.  Hardware is easy to replace, but getting your business information back to a current and useable state is a completely different challenge. 

The SkyPoint team welcome the opportunity to discuss the various backup options available to you or give you a second opinion on the systems you already have in place.  Our advice is free and could save your business in the future. 

Please give them a call on 07 929 4932 or check out the website www.skypoint.co.nz for more details on business information systems backup.

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