Everyone should know how important data backup is, especially in a business context. However, there are some businesses out there that skimp or skip on their backup plans, simply because they’re worried of the costs associated with it.
Chances are data loss is something that is eventually going to happen to you. Hardware isn’t perfect and nor are humans. Your hardware could fail, files could accidentally be deleted, malware could creep into your system… the list goes on. There’s so many ways that your data can go missing and it’s vitally important that you have a backup plan in place.
The excuse that you don’t have the money to implement a backup plan is not acceptable. Should you not have a backup plan, the cost to recover all the data after the fact is going to cost a lot more (both financially and in time) than it will to have a backup plan in the first place.
Data backup doesn’t have to be expensive. If you’re a small business then you can actually perform it relatively cheaply. There are a number of different avenues you can explore; those that implement a number of solutions will ensure that their data is best protected.
Firstly, consider getting a Network Attached Storage (NAS) device. These connect all your computers together on a network, allowing all data to be shared between users. The benefits this has for backup is that you can just run a program, perhaps every night, to go through all the files and backup any incremental changes.
If you back up your files incrementally then it means that you aren’t wasting money paying for storage space that you don’t need. There’s probably no need to keep ten different versions of a spreadsheet, for example – you just want the up to date data.
You can also consider external hard disk drives (HDD) for your storage, which only continue to drop in price. All things considered, HDD storage is pretty cheap and you can get drives that hold vast amounts of data. It isn’t a particularly efficient solution, but if you don’t have many systems to backup then you could consider buying an external drive for each system and backing up onto that. If you have option, a NAS is the way to go. It’s worth paying someone to set one up for you if you don’t know how.
Alternatively, you could look into cloud storage. Although some services may look costly upfront, a lot do offer long term plans which will offer you a discount. There are also services out there, like Carbonite or Dropbox, which offer plans specifically for businesses. Dropbox will charge you based on how many users you have and your storage amount, which means you can adjust your service and pay for only what you need. The benefit of storing your data in the cloud is that it can be accessed from anywhere at any time. Should you suffer a huge data loss then you can quickly restore everything onto a new drive with ease, straight from the cloud.
Data Backup on a Budget
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