5 Things to Know About Data Backups

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Performing a backup of your system and data on a regular basis may seem like a trivial task, but it’s important for many reasons. If you experience a breach that results in data corruption, your last line of defense is to restore your data from a backup. Here are 5 reasons you should back up your data:

Untitled-1A good backup can provide more than just access to your data. A data backup can help you with your Audit and Compliance initiatives. There are several HIPAA, PII, and PPI standards that organizations must comply with in regards to patient, customer, and employee data. Having a secure backup of the data is one way of keeping it protected.

A good and easily accessible backup solution can help you keep high operational tempo. If files are lost or corrupted for any reason, your backups can quickly be restored, reducing the amount of downtime. A test restore should be done on a regular basis, ideally at least every month. Too many companies think they have a backup, but when they need it they realize the data isn’t accessible.

A backup solution is not the same as an archive solution. A backup solution is used to recover data from loss or corruption. Backups are created on a periodic basis as a way to access records that may have been deleted or destroyed. After a certain amount of time, usually a few weeks or even days, the existing backup is overwritten with a new one. Archiving solutions are used to retain older or inactive data for an extended period of time. Archiving solutions are useful for your audit and compliance initiatives.

A backup restore should be part of your Disaster Recovery plan. Did you know that 25% of businesses that experience a major disaster do not return to operation? Recovery Point Objective (RPO) and Recovery Time Objective (RTO) are two of the most important parameters of a disaster recovery plan. RPO defines the amount of data that will be lost or will have to be re-entered during network downtime. RTO defines the amount of “real time” that can pass before the disruption begins to seriously and unacceptably impede the flow of normal business operations. Simply put, RTO answers the question: How much time did it take to recover after you were notified that an interruption to your business process occurred?

Backups should be kept offsite, but accessible. In addition to keeping your latest backup on-site for quick restores, it’s recommended you store your backups on a secure hosted cloud. You should be able to access your backup at any time. Ideally, you would have a copy on-site for quick restores, and a copy, plus history, off-site for Disaster Recovery.

We’ve found that backing up your data on a regular basis can save you a lot of time, headaches, and money. It can also keep you operational if an attack or breach occurs. A backup plan is a critical component of an overall Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Plan. For more information on Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity solutions, contact us today.

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