Happy World Backup Day!

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Today, March 31st, is World Backup Day.

No, this is NOT an early April Fool’s Day joke. And no, you don’ t need to run out and get any cards, candy or flowers for anyone either, so no grumbling about yet another “Hallmark holiday”.  Nor did we have a special luncheon or ceremony for this day, even though we are big fans of it. So then why is there even such a thing as World Backup Day?!  Well, like most everything these days, this independent movement started out on the Internet.  Or to be more precise, by a couple of concerned reddit users.  And since it’s all about a topic that is pretty near and dear to our hearts, we are seriously psyched to help spread the word about World Backup Day.

What is World Backup Day?

To quote the website, it’s a “day for people to learn about the increasing role of data in our lives and the importance of regular backups.”  The mission of this initiative is pretty clear – to get us all to think about what we would do if we lost EVERYTHING that we were storing digitally.  (That’s what we’ve been saying too!) They even went so far as to create this awesome World Backup Day Pledge (which you can take on Facebook or Twitter by clicking here):

“I solemnly swear to backup my important documents and precious memories on March 31st.”

Ummm, sign us up, stat!

But really…why is this a thing?

So maybe a worldwide day on the topic of backups seems a little over the top, or unnecessary.  But when you consider these facts as presented on the World Backup Day site, it’s actually a REALLY important thing that clearly needs more awareness:

  • 30% of people have never backed up
  • 113 phones are lost or stolen every minute (along with the precious memories and information stored on them)
  • 29% of disasters are the result of an accident
  • 1 in 10 computers is infected with viruses each month

This of course doesn’t even speak to the alarming statistics that we have seen and shared about the cost of data loss for businesses and the intensity of the cyber-threats that exist today.  We are in fact probably pretty annoying with our constant reminders that modern, sound data backups are really the only foolproof defense against data loss (wait, does that count as another one?). While World Backup Day is geared more towards creating awareness in individuals, all of this applies to business as well.  Only, in business the stakes are usually much higher.  Which is consequently why all businesses of all size need to be aware of some baseline cybersecurity solutions (including data backups).

OK, So How Can I Backup My Personal Data?

Yay you!  Whether you actually took the pledge on social media or not, you’ve acknowledged that you have a problem (with backups) and that is the most important step in your recovery (and yes, we mean recovery of your precious memories). To again credit World Backup Day here, they propose 2 very simple solutions for people who need to run a backup – an external drive or somewhere on the Internet. External hard drives are pretty common these days, which also means they’re pretty cheap to buy.  You will want to choose one that has enough memory to hold more than your computer can.  Then it’s super-easy – no matter what OS you have – to set up automatic backups to run from your computer. Another simple way to backup your files is by using a cloud-based option.  Products like Microsoft OneDriveDropboxGoogle Drive and iCloud are all viable options that will allow you to store at least your most important files from various devices.  These do tend to have lower storage limits (at least for the free versions), so what you choose depends on the amount of personal data you need store. Yes, it’s just that easy for you to safeguard your personal files, photos, videos, scanned documents, etc.

Newsflash – This All Applies to Business Also

We repeat:  backing up your business data is also of utmost importance.  But the good news is that it can also generally be done in 1 of 2 ways – through an on-site appliance or equipment, or using a cloud-based product.  There is also a 3rd option for business that is popular, which is a hybrid option that utilizes an on-site appliance and also backs up to the Cloud. While we shudder to think that the World Backup Day statistic showing that 30% of people have never backed up could also apply to business, we do know that there certainly are businesses out there who don’t back up at all, or are using antiquated backup methods that will make data recovery and restore a lengthy and possibly expensive process.  Which is pretty crazy considering the modern and affordable data backup management options available today! As this just happens to be something that we specialize in, we would also recommend here that you at least consult with an IT expert on the best way to structure your backup program.  For business, there are many, many factors to consider, including what an acceptable amount of data loss is for you (1 hour, 1 day, 1 week?), the cost of downtime vs. the cost of a more robust backup system, whether you want file-level or bare-metal backups, and finally, what your plan is to access and restore the data after a loss. In celebration of this important day, we encourage you to think about your own data backups – personally and professionally – and take action if necessary.  And if you know your business needs to do something, but you just don’t know where to start, we can help…in fact, we pretty much live for this stuff and it would really make our fake holiday to help you get your backups in order! If you are interested in reviewing your options with one of our experts, let us know!

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