The Importance of Backups

Imagine this, you are about to send an email to a very important client. This email in particular is also very important, as it includes an invoice to be sent to a client for services rendered by you or your company. This invoice has been generated through your accounting software, which you just installed 8 months ago. Your computer also has the database of all your clients, their records, the work that you have done for them, and other critical information.

And while you’re smiling to yourself, thinking of getting paid right before the weekend, your computer screen goes completely blank. Everything vanishes from sight. Your computer will turn back on but will not boot into Windows. You try all the onscreen options given, but you keep ending up back in the same place. Nothing you do makes a lick of difference and you begin to wonder if your data is lost forever.

It is at this crushing moment you realize your computer has…(oh no)…crashed, along with your dreams of a carefree weekend.
But wait; do you have a backup strategy in place? You do? What a relief, that was a close call! If you are still unconvinced of the importance of a solid backup strategy, read on.

Computers are electronic devices, and like all machines, have the potential to crash or fail. This can lead to either data loss or corruption, neither of which is desirable. You may not be able to prevent these failures, but you can protect your data. It is advisable to regularly backup your important files and data. Experts say that restoring your data is as easy as 1-2-3, and is certainly much easier than recreating it. Below are some easy and convenient ways of protecting your data, yourself and your business.

Options for “Local” Backups
1. CD/DVD/BluRay
2. USB sticks
3. External hard drive

Locally, your data can be backed up onto a CD/DVD/BluRay disc, a USB stick aka Flash drive or an external hard drive. The amount of data, how often you need to backup and the degree of portability needed will determine which is best for you. Discs are inexpensive and ok for occasional backups of relatively small amounts of data. Backing up to a disc not recommended as a long-term solution, however, because it is a fairly fragile format and you must be careful to prevent scratches and damage. A USB stick, or Flash drive, is highly portable and can store several gigabytes of data, depending on the model. If you have a very large amount of data to backup, an external hard drive will likely be your best option. These easy to use devices can store anywhere from a few to several thousand gigabytes of data, depending on the model.

Online Backup
Thanks to ever-evolving internet technology, you now have the option of backing up your data online. To do this, you will first need to purchase and install the software and then tell it what and when to backup. After your parameters are set, the software does the rest for you. Automatically backing up whatever, whenever, you’ve chosen. You will, however, need a fast and reliable internet connection for this solution to work to its full potential. This is a great option as it offers offsite storage; keeping your important data safe from fire, floods and thieves. And also because you can access your data from anywhere in the world, as long as you have an internet connection. We also recommend using online backups in addition to local backups to provide a multi-tier backup strategy. You can never be too careful when it comes to protecting your data.

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