A Seat Belt for the IT System
By: Axel Schmidt, Public Relations Manager at TeamViewer
Putting on a seat belt is viewed as a necessity for all car rides – whether it’s a trip to the neighborhood store or a cross-country drive. The slogan “Click It or Ticket” can even be seen lining any U.S. major highway. Using a seat belt is protection against the worst case scenario. It is an extremely important step in an emergency and something you hope to never need.
What do seat belts have to do with IT? One can argue: When a data backup plan is missing, it is like forgetting to buckle a seat belt. By incorporating a backup into a business’ IT plans, problems can be prevented by taking the necessary steps prior to a data emergency. Missing this critical step can be harmful not only to the life of the company’s IT system but to the life of the entire organization, just as not using a seat belt is harmful to the lives of the passengers in a vehicle.
An insurance plan for your data
No matter the size of a business – whether it be a major enterprise or a home business – a data backup can be a “life saver” in more than one sense. When a backup plan is missing, mission-critical information that keeps a business running is at risk – this includes everything from customer credentials to company financials. Business owners and IT professionals need to think of a backup plan as not just an important part of an IT plan, but instead, as an important part of their business plan.
According to the Wharton School of Business, 10 percent of small businesses will go out of business due to some sort of data loss. That is an incredible stat – 1 in 10 small businesses shut their doors due to an easily preventable disaster. Wharton also found that if the data loss lasts longer than 10 days, the number jumps to 50 percent – which is why recovery plans must be quick and efficient.
If you are still not convinced about the value of a data backup plan, check out these startling statistics:
- 37 percent of small businesses have had to restore lost data from a backup at some point (Symantec)
- On average data loss costs approximately $8,600 per hour of downtime (Aberdeen Group)
- 51 percent of organizations are at risk of failing to recover from data loss due to unpreparedness (Disaster Recovery Preparedness Council)
As with seat belts, data backups aim to act as a type of insurance against risks that are continuously present while in a moving vehicle.
No one size fits all option – doing your research is key
As companies of all sizes look for more cost efficient and flexible solutions to support their business needs, many are leaving behind traditional tapes and turning to the cloud to back up their business data.
While the cloud brings many benefits, knowing which functionalities to look for when selecting a cloud provider for business purposes can be difficult. The needs of a business vary greatly from what is needed for personal use, and it is important that all of your company data can be backed up quickly and easily in a secure environment.
When it comes down to backing up crucial business data, it is important to find a backup system with features that will secure data including files, the system state of PCs, Microsoft Exchange Servers, network shares, Microsoft SQL Servers and MySQL databases. What to look for when selecting the right backup system
As Aberdeen describes in its March 2014 report, Backup “Hoarders” Fail the Recovery Test, the goal of a backup should not be to save as much data as possible, but rather to avoid downtime and data loss. With these objectives laid out, emphasis must be placed on the recovery aspect of “backup and recovery.” With this in mind, here are some important aspects that SMBs in particular must look for:
- Automation – By setting up a regular schedule, backup becomes a process that runs in the background and the issue of human error is avoided. If you don’t have a seat belt on at the time of the accident, the seat belt is of no use.
- Speed – Features like targeted backup, maximum compression and automated deduplication means less redundancy and faster backup and restoration.
- Restoration – If there ever is an event that causes data loss, a backup system needs to be able to fully restore all data that has been lost, to the same location it was originally stored.
In case of an emergency: implementing a data back up plan
When seat belts were first invented, people never really understood why they were so important until a fatal car crash was proved to have been preventable with a seat belt. In terms of a data backup, many companies may not invest the time and energy until they face a data emergency that puts the whole organization at risk.
Ultimately, the decisive factor – both for seat belts as well as data backups – comes down to effectiveness. For a data backup, such as airbackup, this means that users need to have the ability to restore their data in an easy, as well as timely way that will save them in a data emergency, which is proven overtime.
At the end of the day, it can be said that implementing a backup plan is just as easy as buckling a seat belt. It may not seem like something that is necessary at all times, but if a data emergency is to ever occur, you (and the rest of your company) will be you glad your IT personnel took the time to complete it.