Our good friend and tech guru Kasey Traeger published an article on her blog that she was kind enough to let us share here on the 1AutomationWiz e commerce blog.
Ok, so I lied, the topic isn’t very sexy, and no the topic isn’t going to help put money in your pocket with some super cool ninja marketing or WordPress tip, but it’s vital that you take heed to her advice.
Failing to do so, can be and often are catastrophic for you and or your business.
The fact is that everyone “says” they do back ups but want to know a secret? I’ve personally spoken to hundreds of ecommerce merchants on the topic of data security and they’ve admitted to me on many occasions that they “just don’t do a data back up as often as they should.”
In fact, many of them relay on their web host or some plug in to do their back ups for them. But they don’t have a plan on storage, or the security or management of they data back ups that they do make.
So, please take just five minutes and read the article below. Kasey gives some great tips, examples and strategies for how to do your backups, resources for doing them and even how to automate the entire process. And if there is one thing we love at 1AutomationWiz, it’s “Automation!”
Are You Backing Up? Be Honest….
Do you have anti-virus software running on your computer? Do you feel safe knowing that your anti-virus software is protecting your computer? If so, I hope you will stop whatever multitasking you may be doing while reading this and pay very close attention.
Today’s post is inspired by a true story that happened to me just last week. While browsing around the Internet, I landed on a website that turned out to have a virus embedded within it.
My computer downloaded the infected file which was detected by my anti-virus software. A popup window appeared from my AV software notifying me of the infected file and asking whether I wanted to quarantine the file for cleaning.
Before I even had a chance to click the ‘Quarantine’ button, however, the damage had already been done. My computer immediately began its shutdown procedure leaving me no time to save what I was working on.
After shutting down, it attempted to reboot itself, but it was never able to reboot fully. I wasn’t even able to start the computer in ‘safe’ mode. Things were looking pretty bleak.
Ultimately, we had to do a lot of work to my computer to restore it to working capacity. The good news is that we were able to bring the computer back to life. The bad news is that I lost several data files in the process.
As you can see, having anti-virus software is not always enough to prevent damage to your computer or your very important data files – your Word documents, spreadsheets, pictures, mp3s, videos, etc. You need a plan to recover from the damage as quickly as possible should a virus or other type of malware make its way onto your computer.
Heck, your laptop/computer could be damaged by any number of factors, not just viruses. (Ever dropped your laptop into a swimming pool? I can guarantee you it doesn’t enjoy swimming as much as you do!) For all of those situations, you need a strong, robust backup system in place.
Fortunately for me, I do have a backup system running for times just like this. Because of my backup system, it was a relatively painless process for me to recover the damaged files and get back to work after the virus had been successfully scrubbed and purged from my computer. Would you have been able to do the same?
It happens to the best of us, and if it hasn’t happened to you yet, it’s only a matter of time before your computer suffers from some type of ailment or dies a painful death … and takes your files with it.
More than 60% of small businesses that suffer a data loss end up going bankrupt or out of business which is why it is crucial for you to put a backup system in place as soon as possible. The loss of data, and the lack of a backup system to restore that lost data, can quite literally be the difference between life and death for your business.
There are many different ways you can backup your data. The most traditional method, and the one that saved me, is backing up to an external hard drive. At less than $100 for up to 1TB (terabyte) of data, external hard drives can be a cost-effective way to backup your data.
If you go this route, you will want to install backup software that will periodically and automatically backup your files to the drive. Most people will not remember to manually backup their files, so it’s important that you have software running that will do it for you. Otherwise, you could find yourself restoring files that are months old rather than hours or days old.
A popular alternative to the external hard drive, and the one that I recommend to the majority of my clients, is cloud storage.
Cloud storage means that your backup files will be stored ‘in the cloud’ on a Web server. The best cloud-based backup systems will automatically update your backup files whenever you’re connected to the Internet and will run in the background so your files are being backed up even while you’re busily working away on your computer.
The two most popular of these backup services are Backup Blaze and Carbonite. At approximately $50 per year and up, making them even more affordable then external hard drive. Their ease of use, plus the fact that all of your files are backed up to a server that is miles from your home, make both services well worth the price.
One downside to both services, especially Backup Blaze, is the slow speed at which your files will be uploaded to their servers. A full backup of your files, especially if you have many gigabytes of audio and video files, will take several days. Fortunately, you can continue to work on your computer while your files are being uploaded, but it’s important to know that the process is not fast.
Regardless of how you choose to backup your system, it’s very important to do so. As I was reminded last week, a good backup system is worth its weight in gold.