Too many companies today either back up their data ineffectively, or not at all. They’ll often use external hard drives or DVDs that only get processed once in a while. And when the backups do get performed, you have to worry about storing them off-site, and tracking 10 different versions of your files.
In many cases, the backups are even kept on-site. So in case of a fire or other disaster, you lose both versions: Live and Backup.
And in the event that this data is stolen and distributed, your company might face unanticipated legal problems. Since electronic documents are now the leading method for business communications, governments are beginning to enact strict new regulations regarding privacy and data retention.
Not only is the old-fashioned manual backup process long, complicated and expensive, but it also leaves a lot of room for human error.
Online backup offers several key advantages over older methods of data protection:
- It’s securely encrypted
- It’s off-site
- And best of all… it’s completely automated
If you’ve been thinking about backing up your business data to the cloud, here are a few things that you’ll want to keep in mind when deciding on a provider:
When you pick a provider, make sure that they allow their customers to retain the private encryption key to their data. This ensures that your private data can’t be read by the online backup provider, or anyone else who might intercept your files.
Make sure you pick a company that’s been around for a long time. You don’t want to work with a fly-by-night online backup provider that just opened their doors 2 months ago. (Technology companies have a low survival rate in their first 12 months)
Make sure that the online backup provider you select has your data securely stored in multiple locations. This way, you won’t lose your backup data if their primary datacenter gets wiped out. Most companies offer this, but it’s still good to ask… just in case.
Small businesses often have tight budgets, and can’t afford the luxury of having on-site IT support staff. When selecting your online backup provider, make sure that they offer live support… preferably by phone.
Of course, the REAL competition – when evaluating online backup companies – is the option of not doing anything at all. Too often, people will love the idea of cloud backup, but they’ll just put it off until later since there’s no sense of urgency.
What these people need to realize is that online backup isn’t JUST about data protection. It’s also about being more productive. Not only are you keeping your company safer by eliminating the possibility data loss from faulty media or human error… but you’re also giving yourself an extra 15-30 minutes of free time every day by automating a thankless manual task that was keeping from leaving work at 5:00pm.
The online backup industry has evolved a lot over the past few years, and it’s now easier and cheaper than ever to find a very high-quality Software-as-a-Service backup provider to protect your business. Just look for someone who’s trustworthy and secure, and also offers the redundancy and support your business needs.