If you lose your company's data, it can become crippled and may never fully recover. Even startups need a backup plan and a reliable backup process. Taking action before a disaster occurs will save time and money in the long run.
When you create a backup, you store a copy of the data on your system off-site, so you may use it to restore the original data in case your system crashes, or data becomes corrupted. Backups can be helpful to recover deleted files if you have backed them up. Below are some tips for taking good care of your backup data.
What Data Do You Need to Protect?
The short answer to this question is everything. Losing any data permanently is not something you want to risk. You need data to keep your business operational.
There are some specific questions to ask, both in the short and long-term. For example:
- You might need the ability to restore data as quickly as possible.
- You might need the ability to recover data.
- You might need to keep services available to clients.
- You may need to back up databases, files, operating systems, applications, and configurations.
The more comprehensive your data backup plan is, the less time it will take for you to get back in business. These questions can help point you in the direction of the right backup solution for your company. You may also want to think about what data is most important.
You might be able to live without an immediate back-p of somethings. However, you might need instant access to others.
What Are Your Data Risks?
Given the current pace of cybercrime growth, you will want to consider the best practices to protect your data from hackers. Here are some questions to ask to determine which risks you must consider.
- Has my company ever been hacked before?
- Are careless employees a concern when it comes to security?
- Is my location at risk for weather-related damage such as flooding or wildfires?
- Do clients log in to my system to access data or services?
Asking these questions will help you identify your risks. A company in a hurricane-prone area might be worried about flooding or wind damage. A customer system linked to your data adds additional risks. Be as thorough as you can as you assess your risks.
1. Assess the business's backup needs
Data backup requires IT to understand who needs backup, how much data it will back up, and its importance to the organization. System recovery and data backup also require these considerations.
2. Know the backup and recovery policy
Backup and recovery processes are detailed in this policy. Data backups should comply with the policy components.
3. Properly backup and restore data
The backup procedures of the organization should be documented even when using automated backup systems. Monitoring and reporting on backup and recovery processes can aid in continuous improvement and audit activities.
4. Verify that the backups are authentic
This feature is typically included in backup systems. Because of the numerous threats to information systems and data, ensure data is complete and unaltered during the backup process.
5. Run unscheduled live and automated backup tests periodically
The purpose of this activity is to confirm that backups have been performed correctly. Data anomalies may be corrected, data owners notified, and the backup system examined to ensure it is functioning properly if the organization detects them.
6. Review the data backup schedule
Diagnose backup issues from source to data repository, including any issues with transmission media. Check the backup system times to see if they are in line with the company's policy.
7. Monitor recovery points and times
It is important to measure recovery time objectives (RTOs) and recovery point objectives (RPOs) during the backup process. A company's RTO values must be periodically compared to backup system performance from a system and data recovery perspective. RPO values relate to how frequently and how quickly data backups are performed to ensure that systems and data are always up-to-date.
8. Ensure backup and recovery are reviewed in disaster recovery plans
In BCDR (business continuity and disaster recovery) plans, a backup and recovery policy should outline how backup and recovery will take place and how they will be accomplished.
9. Conduct regular backups and restores
Business restoration is made easier when data recovery is available during an emergency. The test process should be organized, documented, executed, lessons learned identified, fixed, and BCDR plans updated as needed.
10. Back up and recover reports
Prepare and distribute reports outlining backup and recovery activities to IT and senior management using backup and recovery systems data. There may be documents outlining the overall system summary level report, performance metrics deviations, system patches, and storage media updates. Data protection is probably the biggest challenge for backup and recovery. In this context, data is created, delivered, used, stored, and destroyed. To protect data from loss or corruption, an effective data protection policy and overall program make sure that data is backed up securely and recovered rapidly after being damaged or deleted, modified, damaged or malfunctioning hardware, or attacked by viruses and other malware.
An efficient data backup and recovery program is not a nice-to-have capability: your company’s livelihood ultimately depends on it. Following these steps will allow you to produce a solid, workable framework for reliable and secure data backup and recovery—one that can withstand any regulatory audit.