Is your company prepared for a major technology failure? Do you have thorough and well-thought-out steps in place to ensure your business will be able to recover and function as necessary?
If you’re a business owner, you need to be able to answer these critical questions. With the complexity of today’s technology, several incidents can occur that can derail your business:
- Server or hardware failure can result in loss of data.
- Cyberattacks like ransomware and phishing attacks can take your business offline.
- More basic calamities, like power failure or equipment damage caused by power grid failures and severe storms, can also wreak havoc.
As a result, now more than ever, today’s businesses need a backup and disaster recovery (BDR) solution in place. Yet, of businesses that have BDR plans, 23% do not test them. For these reasons, let’s take a closer look at data backup to understand how BDR used to be implemented, how advancements in technology have revolutionized it today, and how your business needs to take advantage of all this.
Traditional Data Backup
Data backups have traditionally been physical reels with magnetic tape that stored company data. The reels were kept on-site for easy access in case of an emergency. It made sense to have the data backup on-site to be able to retrieve it as soon as it was needed.
However, tape storage is an inefficient way to back up company data. If you lose your data, it can take hours to restore. In fact, the downtime that can occur while waiting for data restoration can be devastating, with Gartner estimating that downtime can cost companies around $5,600 per minute.
And that’s just a limitation of the technology process needed to retrieve data on tapes. If anything were to happen to the physical tapes themselves, your data could be completely lost, with no way to recover it. The same can be said for USB drives and solid-state drives.
Therefore, the most effective backup strategy for businesses is to have multiple backups, on-site and off-site. This is consistent with what’s known as the 3-2-1 backup rule, which should be used as a baseline for all business BDR plans.
Businesses can still achieve all three aspects of the 3-2-1 rule by using traditional, physical backups. Yet having strictly physical backups can slow the recovery process if an off-site backup is needed, as it will need to be retrieved or shipped from its off-site location.
So, how can a business bridge the gap between a physical and off-site backup?
Cloud-Based Backup and Disaster Recovery
A more ideal solution for your business’s data and backup disaster recovery plan is to set up a cloud-based BDR system. Cloud-based data backup is more secure, more efficient and more convenient than tape storage.
For one thing, backup occurs more frequently through the process of snapshot-based backups. A snapshot-based backup occurs when information changed since the last backup was taken. This means you get more backups throughout the day, sometimes as often as every 15 minutes.
Having frequent backups means drastically decreasing the potential of large amounts of data being lost. With these backups, your data can be saved both on-site and in the cloud, making access reliable and easy.
In sum, the advantage of using cloud-based BDR is that you can restore data to any hardware device. This includes the BDR device itself. Regardless of what may have caused the data loss, you’ll have instant access to the backup the second you need it. And instant access means minimal downtime.