A reliable data backup system is your business’ best defence against data loss. However, not all types of backups are able to protect your business against all kinds of data loss. Many companies believe that just by having an onsite backup in place, they have all of their bases covered. Unfortunately, that’s rarely the case.
Onsite backups are an excellent way to keep copies of your important files on hand if your hard drive crashes, or your systems become infected with a virus. Backing up critical data on a daily basis to an onsite system – whether that system is a server or external drives – is smart, and will absolutely benefit your business. But these onsite backups need to be tested regularly to ensure that they are working properly. If not, you may as well not be backing your data up at all.
The biggest challenge for onsite backups is the simple fact that they are physically present in your office. Even if they are updated routinely and kept in perfect working order, onsite backups are vulnerable to all of the same hazards as the rest of your onsite hardware. Water damage due to severe weather or a plumbing issue, fire and smoke damage, or a power surge can quickly render your onsite backups useless. And as with any other piece of hardware, they will eventually fail as their useful lifespan comes to an end.
It’s for these reasons that IT support providers recommend using an offsite backup system in addition to your onsite backup system. A cloud-based or hosted backup can copy your sensitive data to a secure offsite location, protecting it from physical damage. Many of these options can be set to automatically copy your business’ data to a virtual server, ensuring that your backups are consistently up to date. Your IT provider can monitor these backups for you, giving you the peace of mind of knowing that your data is secure, and accessible to you when you need it most.
Both onsite and offsite backups have their own strengths and weaknesses, which is why redundancy is so important. When it comes to your business’ vital data, there is no such thing as being too cautious.