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How Do I Back Up Business Data?

If your business experiences a cyberattack, restoring your data from backups would be the fastest and usually cheapest way to get everything back to normal. Of course, that means having the foresight to ensure all your data is backed up and those backups are sufficiently secure.

Many cloud-based systems today, including the entire Microsoft 365 suite, feature automatic limited backups. You may think this is enough to protect you, but oftentimes these backups aren’t secure enough or aren’t held for long enough to bring you back from a ransomware attack.

In this article, we’ll cover what you need to know about data backup and data recovery in NZ.

What is a data backup?

A data backup is an external repository of your business-critical data. The purpose of this repository is to create a store of data that can be drawn upon if the main or working data storage is compromised by disasters, accidents or hackers.

Backup data is not just the personal data of your customers and staff, but also sensitive business files, documents, media files, configuration data, machine images, operating systems and registry files. In other words, your data backups aren’t just your files and images — data backups encompass your settings, software and more.

Why your business needs backups

You may not think your business needs backups. Maybe digital isn’t currently a focus for you, or perhaps you don’t think you collect customer data. The odds are, you’re mistaken.

Realistically, with any part of your business being digital — including POS and inventory systems or email marketing lists, you’re at risk of losing valuable data and possibly even being liable for a data breach (and the relevant fines).

Data backups aren’t just for your customer data — they’re for all digital data recorded for your business. Should your systems be compromised, you would likely need to build everything from the ground up without backups, which can be incredibly costly.

With backups, restoring data that has been lost in a fire, accidentally deleted by a staff member or held ransom by a hacker, can be done with minimal disruption to your business and budget.

3 common data backup methods

Backups aren’t a new concept. Businesses have been looking to protect their data for a long time. It’s where and how we store backups that has evolved. These are the three main methods for creating backups.

1.     Independent drives

Independent drives are a common method, especially for smaller businesses. Terabyte external hard drives are relatively inexpensive today, making this a more affordable option for some businesses. You can plug in your external hard drive and create or restore backups with relative ease.

It’s important to note with external hard drives that you’re limited by location and scale. Whoever is creating the backups must have the drive physically plugged into their computer, and once the drive is full it cannot be quickly expanded — instead, the data must be split onto a second drive.

External hard drive backups can be created manually every day, week or month, or automatic backup settings can be configured, though these require being constantly connected to the external drive.

2.     Offsite servers

Offsite servers are a step up from independent drives, offering greater security and protection against disaster.

This method requires physical storage media which is held off-site and regularly updated. Each time new backups are created, they must be physically transported to the offsite server, which is usually at an office branch or with a records management company.

This option has a great deal more scalability than independent drives and offers huge amounts of storage space at a nominal cost. However, the benefits of offsite servers are also their weaknesses, as they can slow down the backup and restore process due to the transport times.

Your data may also be exposed to additional damage risks during transport.

3.     Cloud backups

Like offsite servers, cloud backups are inherently located away from your main server. The key difference is that data can be transferred remotely online, enabling automation and scheduling instead of relying on physical transport.

This means backups can be created very regularly, and data can be restored quickly over a WAN or internet connection.

Cloud backups are incredibly reliable, with redundant drives compensating for potential hardware faults. They can also integrate well with incremental backup solutions, where only the changed portions of files are updated in your backups. This helps to reduce bandwidth usage.

Most crucially, with cloud backups, you always have access to your backups and you can restore damaged data incredibly quickly, from any location.

Cloud backups for Microsoft 365

If you use Microsoft 365, you may think you’re covered when it comes to backups. But you might not be aware of the limitations of Microsoft’s Native Backup Protection.

While Microsoft provides a great service, the native backups are only generated for short-term recovery and only cover loss of service due to natural disasters, data centre outages, or hardware failure.

That leaves you responsible for user error, malicious hackers, malware and more. Ultimately, you need to ensure you have access to, and control over, your Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, OneDrive and CRM Dynamics data.

Whatever data you hold, NSP Cloud Backup for Office 365 can protect it. Our 100% SaaS platform keeps business-critical emails, calendars, sites, groups, teams, projects, files, and conversations secured with unlimited, automatic backup and anywhere storage.

Read more: Download our ebook on Office 365 backups

Backups that cannot be altered

In addition to cloud backups, you might consider immutability. NSP Immutable Backups add a further layer of protection against ransomware.

Hackers today know you have backups, and they’ll take their time to ensure you can’t restore those backups. Immutability is the ultimate defence against hackers tampering with your backups.

Immutable backups cannot be altered or deleted, keeping them impervious to new ransomware infections. With full end-to-end immutable backups, you can rest assured you cannot be held to ransom.

Is your data backed up?

Think about it — what contingencies do you have in place if your business is with a natural disaster, accidental data deletion, or even a cyberattack?

Keep your data safe with NSP Cloud Backup and NSP Immutable Backups. Get in touch with us today to find out how our leading experts can design a backup solution that matches your needs.

By Jon Claridge | 27 July 2022
By Jon Claridge | 27 July 2022

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