Digital pack rat: Should you back-up your data or is it a waste of time?

May 2nd, 2016   |  

Spring is finally here and May 17th is National Pack Rat day. This wacky holiday reminds the hoarders among us that it’s time to get organized and clean out their clutter.

Old Mobile Phones

But clutter doesn’t just live in plain sight; it also lives within our devices and there has been much debate on whether or not businesses and individuals are spending too much time and money saving data.

What is data?

Data is an arrangement of unprocessed facts that is processed into information when it is organized and structured by individuals or organizations. Backing up data means to replicate, save, and store data which can later be restored if the original data is lost or stolen.

Current Data Threats

According to security researcher Camilo Gutiérrez Amaya, ransomware attacks have become an increasing trend for 2016. He urges that all companies and individuals should not only back-up their data, but keep current duplicates of their assets on a regular basis.

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Around 30% of people have never backed up their data, as stated by the leaders of World Backup Day. An organization that promotes the importance of preserving personal data and information.

Backing up your data is just one way to avoid ransomware virus attacks. There are many other ways corporations and individuals are protecting themselves such as, updating operating systems, purchasing anti-virus tools, and avoiding any attachments that are sent from an unknown source.

On the other hand, storing and backing up all of a company’s data can be quite costly. According to Gartner, businesses are spending 20% more than they should be for backing up unnecessary data.

Furthermore, Gartner claims rather than backing up every piece of data, companies should have a more strategic approach to storing old and new information.

“Back-up can be an integral part of disaster recovery and high availability, and it can be repurposed for data mining and patch deployment, rather than being a back-end process that can be leveraged by the business,” said Dave Russell, research VP of Gartner.

Russell goes on to say that the most common mistakes companies make is not updating their back-up policies to only store business files and not personal employee files. Another mistake businesses make is backing up files too many times thus overstraining the system.

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According to Solid Networks, permanently deleting excess data can also be very helpful to a business. Removing extra data from the system can decrease back-up time, reduce chances for performance issues, and faster recovery time if there was ever an emergency.

Most importantly, Solid Network notes deleting old files lessens the chances of anyone else getting a hold of that information (i.e. hackers).
As everything goes, it’s all about balance. In a world where data can either make or break someone, businesses and individuals need to be smart about how they are securing and backing up their data.

Here are some quick tips for backing up and securing data:

  • Rank what information is really needed and only keep critical data
  • Assess the most beneficial process for a data retention policy
  • Back-up only when necessary
  • Make sure that any critical files are also backed up and kept at an off-site location
  • Maintain updated anti-virus software
  • Keep operating systems and software up-to-date
  • Do not follow or open unsolicited web links and attachments in emails
  • Follow safe practices when browsing the web

Got anymore helpful tips on securing your data? Join the conversation on our Facebook page or tweet us @MediaG.

Posted in News.
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