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The 3-2-1 Backup Rule (and Other Backup Best Practices)

You are probably already aware that it is really important to ensure that your company’s data is efficiently backed up on a consistent basis. If you’re already engaging in a backup strategy, kudos to you — but how do you know if the backup strategy you’ve chosen is the best?

Many backup strategies are not 100% reliable. Ask yourself the following questions about your company’s data backup strategy:

  • Are you backing up your data to an onsite or offsite location?
  • Are you encrypting your data?
  • And, are you utilizing anti-theft technology?

When you consider that nearly 60% of small businesses are not prepared for a large data loss, and that another 60% of businesses that suffer a major loss of data go out of business within 6-12 months, you may want to take the time to rethink your data backup strategy.

Why Many Businesses Follow the 3-2-1 Backup Rule

The 3-2-1 backup rule is a rather simple strategy, but following it ensures that your business is well-prepared for any type of data loss situation. It entails making 3 complete backups of your data and keeping 2 of them on separate devices onsite, and one copy at an offsite location.

Imagine if a flood hits your office. Maybe a power surge takes your building’s power offline. Maybe a particularly nasty cyberattack got through and destroyed your data. Even if the disaster damages or destroys one backup source, you still have a secondary backup device to utilize to restore your data.

And, if you were to lose TWO of your on-site backups (common in fires), you still have data at an offsite location. It’s safe, it’s ready to use, and it’ll keep your business running as smoothly as you need before you can restore primary systems.

Related: The Top Benefits of Cloud Backups

Without backups, even something as simple and common as a hard drive crash can cripple a business. That’s especially true if the important data on that hard drive is irretrievable. Backing up to external hard drives and onsite servers, as well as online to a company that provides offsite, safe, and reliable data backup services, means you’ll be able to carry on daily business operations.

You get the peace of mind of knowing that your data is secure and easily retrievable in the event of an unfortunate occurrence.

Related: What Should Your Business Be Backing Up?

Additional Data Backup Best Practices

Use Data Encryption

Company data is often compromised by internal means — that is to say, theft. Even just simple incompetence on the part of employees can cause data loss to fall into the wrong hands. Using data encryption software can keep your data protected from those without the authority to access it.

Related: 6 Steps to Ensuring Data Backup Security

Limit Physical Access to Your Data

This is somewhat self-explanatory — if someone doesn’t need to have access to your data backups, they shouldn’t have access. Even a simple rule like this can drastically cut down on the chances of tampering (or even everyday errors). Be sure to store your on-site backups in a physically secure location, such as a locked server closet.

Backup on a Consistent Basis

You’re continually adding new information to your databases. That includes daily sales, new customer or vendor information, and other important data. In other words, you’ll want to ensure that the data backs up on a consistent basis so that you don’t lose any important information.

As a general rule, many businesses practice backing up the data each evening, after general work hours. It’s a smart way to ensure that data backup processes don’t slow down company operations and networks during the day.

For Data Backup Best Practices, Talk to Netwise

To put it plainly, we’re data backup experts. We know what it takes to operate and manage your data backups so that you never have to worry about losing your data.

We’ll consult with you to discuss your needs and help you develop a strong data backup plan that follows guidelines that fit your needs.

Interested? Let’s talk about data backups.