March 31 was World Backup Day. Just because that date has passed doesn't mean you should ignore your firm's data backup needs.
Everyone needs a reliable data backup and restore system.
Follow a 3-2-1 Backup Strategy
All data storage systems will eventually fail. This includes the spinning hard drives in your servers or desktop computers, the solid state drives (SSD's) in your laptop computers, and the flash memory modules in your tablets and smart phones. The question isn't "if" but "when" will you have a data storage failure.
Protect your data by following this simple rule:
- Have at least 3 independent copies of your data.
- Store the copies on 2 different types of media.
- Keep 1 backup copy offsite.
HOw to IMplement a 3-2-1 Backup
The three independent copies usually means one original (on your hard drive or server) and at least two backups. The two backups should be on two different types of media. Each media type has its own vulnerabilities. If you kept backups on the same type of media, such as external hard drives, the risk of failure is higher than if the backups are on different types of media, such as one backup on an external hard drive and another backup in the cloud.
If you have a local backup on an external hard drive or network attached storage (NAS) device and a remote backup with a reputable cloud backup service, you not only satisfy the second rule about using different types of media, you also satisfy the third rule about having a backup off-site.
Why 3-2-1 is a Best Practice for Backup
The 3-2-1 backup rule is a best practice because it ensures that you’ll have a copy of your data no matter what happens. Multiple copies prevent you from losing the only copy of your data. Multiple locations ensure that there is no single point of failure and that your data is safe from disasters such as fires, theft, and natural disasters.