Do you have a backup plan?
March 31 is World Backup Day and apparently:
21% of people have never made a backup,
29% of data loss is caused by accident,
113 phones are lost or stolen every minute, and
30% of all computers are already infected with malware.
So, what’s your backup plan? Even if you don’t have a formal plan, when was the last time you backed up your important files? How would you feel if all your documents, photos, and other data suddenly disappeared from your phone or computer? Regularly backing up gives you peace of mind that your data is safe.
Redundancy is key in creating a solid backup system because you can never predict when a disaster will happen. Using a 3-2-1 backup strategy is a good place to start.
The 3-2-1 strategy means that you need three total copies of your data, two of them should be on different media or devices and one should be stored offsite. For example, a document could live on your computer, be backed up to an external hard drive, and also be backed up to a paid cloud service.
If you plan to use hardware such as an external drive, flash drive or CD/DVD, make sure the hardware is plugged in and working – no flash drive is going to automatically insert itself into the USB port and copy files. The backups must be regularly scheduled and actually done.
Cloud services may or may not be automatic depending on what service you use. Some online services require you to drag and drop files while others sync automatically. Purchasing an online backup subscription ensures that your backup will be automatic as the service runs in the background and is always looking for new or changed files.
Make sure to test you backup system occasionally by retrieving your data. No matter what hardware or cloud service you use it should be easy and fast to get your data. If you are unable to get it back when you need it, the backup is useless.
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