infoTECH Feature

February 13, 2017

Here's Why Data Backup and Recovery Needs to be a Focal Point

You may assume it’ll never happen to you, but all it takes is one attack, natural disaster, or honest error and all your company’s data could vanish. That’s why you absolutely must have a backup and recovery plan in place.

The Threat of Data Loss

In case you haven’t noticed, we’re currently operating in a tumultuous cybersecurity landscape that requires businesses to take defensive action. Most of the attention is on malicious attacks from cyber criminals – and we’ll certainly address some of that in this article – that’s not the only threat to your data.

For example, did you know that, according to a report from Intel (News - Alert), insider threats are responsible for a whopping 43 percent of all data loss? Roughly half of these instances are accidental, but the other half are intentional.

“Most security studies and statistics focus on infiltration: how attackers are getting past security defenses and into the network,” the report explains. “That part of the attack is more visible, compromising machines and triggering events and alarms in the security operations center. Until now, there has been very little information available on the less visible act of data exfiltration: how attackers are removing data.”

And these are just two potential causes. There are dozens of other ways in which data gets lost and compromised, and that clearly requires a more proactive approach.

Five Reasons to Back Up Your Data

“Hedging has always been significant for the agricultural community as a way to protect the producer from price fluctuations or to insure that they will be able to lock in a profitable price for their crops,” senior market strategist Laura Taylor notes. “But hedging is not an investment tool reserved for those who grow corn, wheat and beans.”

Data backup and recovery solutions are ways to hedge against the risk of data loss. It can be a costly investment, but the price you’ll pay for this security blanket could be minuscule if you compare it to the revenue you stand to lose if your data should be compromised or lost.

That being the case, there are some specific reasons you should invest in a data backup and recovery solution. Here are five of the essentials:

1. Audit and Tax Purposes

Obviously, recordkeeping is of paramount importance for the purpose of filing your taxes. But what happens if you lose data after filing and the IRS proceeds to audit you for an unrelated issue?

Suddenly, it becomes crucial that you have no proof or documentation to back up your claims. Or if you do, it might require massive working hours to sift through fragmented data.

With a data and backup recovery solution, you never have to worry about getting caught with your pants down. Even if your data is compromised, you’ll always have the information you need to protect yourself in any conflicts with the IRS and other regulatory commissions.

2. Natural Disasters

While you may not ever have considered the threat which natural disasters such as tornadoes and hurricanes pose to your data, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) certainly has. It reports that 40 percent of businesses fail to open again after having suffered a natural disaster, and 25 percent fail within a year. An even larger percentage fail within two years.

Though many factors undoubtedly underlie the statistics gathered by FEMA, data loss is certainly among them. Water can damage servers, destroy equipment, and lead to a myriad of other problems. Backing up data won’t save your physical equipment, but it will protect the digital contents.

3. Ransomware and Other Attacks

What would you do if your firm were victimized by a ransomware attack? Given the rising number of ransomware attacks, it’s not that unlikely you could be targeted.

The quandary posed by ransomware is that you have no choice other than to pay the ransom to retrieve your data. But if you have your data backed up at another location, then you don’t have to fork over any money.

In that case, the attack is essentially worthless and you can avoid being held hostage.

4. Downtime

Downtime can be a major problem. Whether it’s at the hands of a faulty server, natural disaster, or any number of other causes, only 44 percent of companies that experience “significant outages” are able to reopen eventually.

Even more shocking is the fact that just 10 percent survive over the long run. Why are these stats so massive?

The fact is, the vast majority of companies either don’t have a backup and recovery plan in place, or the plan they have is inadequate for their needs. With a data backup and recovery solution, you can be ready for unforeseen outages and downtime, and avoid becoming a statistic.

5. Simple Recovery

Your company needn’t undergo some catastrophic event or malicious attack to necessitate a data backup and recovery plan. Sometimes, simple issues or isolated instances of data loss occur, and you simply need the ability to locate and restore the respective file(s) quickly.

With the right backup and recovery solution in place, this becomes convenient and simple to handle.

Now’s The Time to Act

You’ve been warned for years that data loss could potentially set your business back a long time (or even force you to close down). As more and more data gets stored online and new technologies with unknown security vulnerabilities enter the marketplace, it’s becoming more essential for you to take action.

Delay any longer and you could end up in a world of hurt. Act now and you could save your firm’s reputation.

Edited by Alicia Young

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