The right backup strategy for your business
The loss of data, whether customer-, employee- or supplier-related, can cause lasting and profound damageto business processes. A suitable data backup concept and the best possible backup strategy for your company must therefore be defined at an early stage and implemented regularly. As the person responsible for IT and especially as the managing director, storage management is in your hands. In the following, we not only tell you everything you need to know to develop a suitable backup concept, but also refer you to a suitable data backup concept sample (and give you a data backup concept example, PDF file, link below).
The path to an appropriate backup strategy.
If you want to implement a new backup strategy in your company, you first have to answer some questions. You have to clarify which data should be stored for how long and which temporal data loss would still be justifiable. So you first take stock and arrange your inventories according to relevance. In addition, it must be clear what the worst-case financial and legal consequences could be and which storage media are most suitable for data backup. The decision depends above all on the security classification of the data used and to be backed up..
When selecting the appropriate storage technology, one should consider for how long the information is to be preserved, the importance of visual readability or whether the data is to be reproduced in some other way, how transportable the data medium is and how much space it requires. It must also be clarified how sensitive the medium is to external influences and which storage logic it follows. Is it file system or database based and how often can data be recorded at what storage capacity? Of course, the price of the data carrier is also crucial..
The possible costs in the event of loss must be weighed against those that would be incurred for the backup concept as such and the storage of the storage media. A suitable, secured location must be selected and determined for this purpose..
A cost-benefit calculation is recommended in advance in any case. Here you should follow the following rule of thumb: Data and information with high value should be backed up on particularly secure and thus usually more expensive storage media, while less important data can be stored on averagely secured and thus less expensive media. In addition, it should be determined when or how often the data concerned must be available and the maximum time for which access to the information may be denied, depending on the frequency of use of the data..
The data backup strategy with regard to the backup type must also be clearly regulated: Should the data backup be a full backup, incremental or differential? In this context, how often are checks to be carried out on the functionality of the backup media and the integrity and consistency of the data? A responsible person or several responsible employees are to be carefully selected and determined for the implementation of the decided processes. Their task is also to always be aware of applicable legal regulations, as the backup strategy must comply with them..
Dangers of not having a backup strategy.
Many hazards can threaten business-related data. In the event of a system crash, sabotage, hacker attacks, virus or worm attacks, all data backed up on the computer may be lost. Damaging environmental influences, such as lightning strikes, fire or floods, can also cause extensive loss of information.In order to protect against inability to act as a result of such a loss, it is absolutely necessary to make backups of the data worth protecting at regular intervals, which are stored separately from the original information and protected as best as possible against said influences. A threat analysis can clarify in advance which data is particularly at risk and what damage is most likely to occur. In this way, data security can be increased in advance, for example with the aid of encryption programs or firewall installations.
Storage management and the definition of a suitable backup strategy for one's own company has become a decisive criterion for the success of a company. A company that has to shut down or limit its operations due to extensive data loss, even if only temporarily, may lose not only the trust of its customers, suppliers and employees, but also its competitive position, not to mention the financial losses that such a loss entails.
Document the backup strategy in a backup concept.
Once you have answered all these questions in light of the circumstances that exist in your company, weighed up alternatives against each other and costs against benefits, it is a matter of recording the formulated strategy in a backup concept.
Depending on the maximum downtime agreed upon, the financial resources that can be expended, and the number of data changes to be made and at what intervals, one decides on either the full backup, differential backup, or incremental backup method.
While the full backup always backs up the entire system, i.e. all data, current software versions and the operating system in its current state, the differential and incremental methods only record changes in the meantime. If you back up using a differential backup, the change is saved in relation to the last full backup, whereby all memory states made since the last full backup are also transferred. If you use an incremental backup, each save state is saved separately until the next full backup..
Backup concept: template and examples.
For organizational reasons, the backup concept should be written down and clearly laid out so that it can be used as informational material as well as a guide. A well-structured backup concept template (download here) for a data backup plan can be of great help. If you would like to orientate yourself on already existing concepts and are looking for a suitable data protection concept example, there are example concepts, available to you among others, issued by the BSI.
Langmeier Backup: a solution for every business.
You are looking for suitable backup solutions for your business? Langmeier Software offers various backup solutions, tailored to your needs. Back up your data quickly and easily to a secure external hard drive and use the software offered by Langmeier for RAID data backup, creating an EDP backup copy or a Microsoft backup. To ensure long-term success, Langmeier always finds a suitable backup solution for small businesses, medium-sized companies or even large corporations.
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About the Author Charles Rahm, Free contributor
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