While data backup and recovery mistakes are common, data loss can be devastating. You can lose countless files, contracts, or products in one fell swoop. Though it might be possible to replace what you’ve lost, it can take months or even years to do it, resulting in higher unforeseen expenses.
The good news is that you can take steps to avoid data backup and data recovery mistakes.
What Is Data Backup and Recovery?
Data backups work by saving data in a separate place, whether on a physical hard drive or cloud. If your data is lost, your backup will still have everything you last saved on it.
Data recovery is exactly what it sounds like; it refers to the process of bringing back virtual data that was lost, deleted, or damaged in some way. A data recovery organization can use this process to retrieve lost data for you.
Despite these important technological advances, mistakes can still happen. These seven tips will help you understand what they are so you don’t make any costly errors in the future.
Mistake #1: Not Storing a Copy Offsite
One of the top data backup and data recovery mistakes is not storing a copy offsite. Imagine your city floods, preventing you from reaching your office where your main computer system and all its backups reside. If you do not have a copy of that data stored offsite, it’s as good as lost.
Natural disasters like fires, hurricanes, earthquakes, and floods all pose a risk to your data if there is no offsite backup. Physical theft is another often overlooked risk that can do some serious damage to any computer files, especially if your units are stolen or smashed.
You can keep your data offsite on an external hard drive and update it with new backups frequently.
Mistake #2: Not Having a Redundancy Copy
Another data backup and data recovery mistake is not having a redundancy copy. This type of data backup mistake occurs when you have only one original data file stored offsite, which means that it’s your sole backup.
If that data gets corrupted or destroyed, all of the data has been lost forever. Always have at least three copies of your data stored offsite to avoid this problem. Having a redundant copy gives you peace of mind knowing that you still have a copy to fall back on if something happens to your original data.
Mistake #3: Not Using Cloud Storage
Data backup and data recovery mistakes can occur when you’re not using cloud storage. While physical backups stored offsite are a good idea, it’s also a good idea to utilize the cloud.
Using the cloud to store your data means your information is stored offsite in servers located at data centers. Cloud data storage is the safest and most reliable data backup and recovery method because you can access data anywhere.
You can also update your information much more frequently than other backup systems, meaning your cloud storage will have more up-to-date and accurate files than another system would. With cloud data storage, even if your office burns down or floods, all your data is always available online.
Mistake #4: Not Verifying and Testing Backups
Another data backup mistake is not verifying and testing backups. Your data backup and recovery plan will only work if you can restore data from a recent backup, so it’s essential to regularly test and verify your data backups. You should always check:
- File sizes match original files
- Data was backed up successfully
- Data-related errors are captured in data logs
- External data drives are connected properly
By ensuring that your backups are error-free, you can avoid nasty surprises down the road.
Mistake #5: Not Having a Tested Disaster Recovery Plan in Place
Having a disaster recovery plan is a sensible practice. Testing this plan regularly will prepare you to use it should the worst happen.
Also, make sure to conduct data backup and data recovery training for employees to prepare for a data disaster. Undergo this training at least once per year and when hiring new employees who need to learn your data recovery process.
Mistake #6: Not Using Automation Features
Not using data backup and data recovery automation features is another data backup mistake. If you have a data disaster, you will need to perform data restore requests manually, which can take up all of your time. Automation features enable companies to automate data backup tasks such as verifying, scheduling, and notifying employees when data backups are complete.
Automation features make data backup and data recovery tasks easier and faster, so you can spend more time focusing on your business. However, one thing to remember is that not all data backup and data recovery automation features are created equal. Choosing an automated system that also allows for occasional manual backups can keep your files up to date no matter what happens.
Mistake #7: Using Outdated Technology
When your data backup technology becomes outdated, your liabilities go up. Increased risk of security breaches, loss of mobility, and less connectivity will leave your databases vulnerable. You could also miss regular backups or be unable to restore data due to an unsupported feature.
Ensure that the technology you select has the most up-to-date features to avoid this problem. This is easy to do by taking the following steps:
- Reading reviews
- Testing free software before buying
- Comparing features of different software
- Asking colleagues or other business owners about their data backup solutions
- Talking with data recovery companies about their experience
Once you choose the right solution for your situation, you should implement the software as soon as possible and test it to make sure it works correctly.
When it comes to your business, you can never be too safe. That’s why it’s crucial to avoid making any of the top seven data backup mistakes listed above. By following these tips, you’ll help ensure that your data is always safe and readily available in a data disaster.
If you’re not sure where to begin, contact Data Magic today, and we’ll help you get started with our Cloud Backup Services. We offer the most up-to-date software with automation features, so you don’t have to worry about manually backing up or restoring your data in a disaster again. Contact us to learn more about our data backup and recovery services.