Profit Clue – Assessing Your Risk of Data Loss

Posted on January 7, 2013 by djb | Posted in Highlights

Have you ever considered what the financial, operational and reputational risk of data loss would be to your company?

When computer systems fail, you lose time restoring them to their previous state. Even worse, you may lose the data altogether which has the hard cost of re-creating the data in addition to time delays in your processes, system downtime and idle employees. All of these delays could cause your company to miss important deadlines or lose valuable information about your customers. Not only do you potentially risk straining your relationships, but harming your reputation as well.

Have you taken time lately to evaluate the effectiveness of your backup system and processes, the administrative burden of running them and the risks involved?  If you have not, you should.

What could go wrong?

Tape backups

– If you are one of the many organizations running tapes, you should make sure you implement a rotation schedule that includes identifying when a tape needs to be replaced. We see repeatedly where a client, who is taking all the correct steps – religiously backing up their data daily, storing tapes off site, using a daily, weekly and monthly cycle – finds out, when the time comes for a restoration of the backed-up data, the tapes they were using are three years old and the data on them is now unreadable.  The cost of replacing tapes is not inexpensive, but if you’re going to use a tape system, it is critical.

Data stored on site

– You may be using the newest tapes and the best system, but if you do not store your data off site, you risk losing everything in a natural disaster or a fire. Storing backup media in a fireproof safe does not guarantee that the tapes or other media will be usable should a fire occur.  While flames may never reach the inside of the safe, the interior temperature could rise to the point where the media becomes distorted and unusable.  When looking at your data storage procedures you need to consider:

  • Who is responsible for taking the media home?
  • Is the data in an encrypted format?
  • How serious would it be if your data was stolen from their car or home?
  • What if that employee leaves the company and takes all your “trade secrets”?
  • Has there been staff turnover and is the new staff member aware they are supposed to be taking the media home?

USB memory key

– These devices are highly portable, provide quick access and are extremely cheap. They are also easy to lose, easy to steal and require manual backups.  The backup process usually sees the administrative person taking a copy of the important data at the end of the day and putting it on a memory key. Usually only one memory key is used rather than a rotation of multiple keys.  If there was a fire at the facility during working hours, where would the memory key be? It is usually attached to the admin person’s keychain, sitting at their desk while your facility goes up in flames.  Another common problem is that data is overwritten on the memory key nightly. Therefore, there is a risk that when a document is corrupted it is not noticed for days or weeks, but you have now backed up the corrupt data on the memory key and have no uncorrupted versions available for use.

These examples just scrape the surface – many other things could go wrong. Is there a better system?

DJB Solutions  Inc. offers an online backup alternative for your data. Our program runs automatically every day and backs up to two secure off-site servers. You can choose how many backups are stored (i.e. 5 days + 1 weekly and 1 monthly) thereby tailoring the program to your specific needs. With this flexibility you can keep as little or as many backups as you see fit.

How does it work?

Every night at a predetermined time, our Back-IT up program will copy the data that has changed since your last backup, and upload that encrypted data to our servers. This minimizes your bandwidth usage as only altered data is copied.  Your data is fully encrypted before it leaves your premises and you are the only one who has access to the key. When required, restoring data can be as quick and easy as copying a file.

Do you have any files where it is imperative that you don’t lose any changes to them?   Our program can also monitor those identified files for you constantly and do an automatic backup each and every time the file is changed.

With DJB Solutions Back-IT up, you are fully protected with minimal manual intervention by you or your staff. You will get an email after each backup that lets you know that the backup process was successful.

With plans starting at $35 per month, we know we have a Back-IT up solution that will fit your needs, and on an annual basis, is likely cheaper than the cost of replacing your tapes.

DJB Solutions Inc. would appreciate the opportunity to discuss your backup needs, so please give your DJB professional a call to discuss how we can assist.