Your data is one of your most important assets. And you probably have a backup strategy in place to protect it. Such strategies can be as simple as a nightly backup of your network server(s) or a much more elaborate replication and business continuity system. Often, however, we hear of stories of people or companies that encounter irrecoverable data loss, despite having what would otherwise appear to be a satisfactory backup and disaster recovery strategy in place. If there is a backup mechanism in place, how do they lose their data?
PUT IT IN A SAFE, PROTECTED PLACE
Our computers, the networks they are attached to and the vast modern cloud offer each user the ability to save and store their precious data (documents, presentations, spreadsheets, etc.) in innumerable places. Even in the most secure and hardened computing environments, it’s virtually impossible to control, with 100% certainty, where people are saving their data. The most common scenario is an employee that makes a habit of saving their files to their local PC hard drive. This is usually a disaster in the making, as many businesses simply don’t backup individual computers.
While it certainly is possible to backup each and every PC in your organization, most organizations choose to deploy the traditional and more simplistic, cost-effective and efficient method of having users store their data in a centralized repository such as a folder on a central server that many people can access. After all, it is this centralized sharing and technological advance that allowed us to escape from the throes of “sneakernet” – jargon for the method of transmitting files by personally carrying it from one place to another on floppy disk or other removable medium. (I’m dating myself!)
THINK BEFORE YOU SAVE!
So, what can you do about this, or how do you mitigate your risks? Think before you save, and encourage others to do the same. Every day, your employees or colleagues are creating, modifying and saving their valuable work product. Take a moment to check yourself first. Ask yourself these questions, and be honest with the answers: Where do I save my data? Is it on a server that I am sure is backed up? Am I saving proprietary or confidential data to a cloud location or service that might be the next highly publicized hacking incident? Am I using removable USB drives or other detachable media that are subject to viruses or complete failure? Ask your co-workers and employees too.
Education and diligence are paramount. The more educated your user base, the lower likelihood of data loss or disaster. Your technology team at Exigent can provide you with strategies and information to provide that education to your end users.
As always, if you have concerns or questions, please call us. We’d be happy to discuss your unique needs and the various ways to mitigate your risks.