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6 things you should include in your backup policy

By Sarika Vatner on 7/07/15 10:30 AM
If your Businesses data is important to your core function, and you cannot afford to have your business operations stopped for a few hours, days or even weeks, than you need to read this report NOW and put its contents into practice immediately.

When there is data there is a data backup policy, whether your company chooses to write everything down with pen and paper, you need to have some sort of back up policy in place, in order to recovery your data should something go wrong.

One of the most critical functions of any organisations is their ability to recover, restore and retrieve data that is lost/damaged/compromised. An organisation without data or the ability to protect its data faces serious issues with longevity and validity.

Considering the ever growing risk of cyber security threats that face all businesses today big and small, there is critical need for a well thought out, efficient, and reliable backup policy. Costs of data loss can range from $500-$50,000, and this doesn’t include lost productivity, sales, reputation and client goodwill that can be damaged when a company can’t operate or fulfil on its promises due to technical problems.

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A backup policy is a pre-defined, set schedule whereby information from business applications such as Oracle, Microsoft SQL, email server databases and user files are copied to disk and/or tape to ensure data recoverability in the event of accidental data deletion, corrupted information or some kind of a system outage. The policies will typically have a default protection scheme for most of the servers in the environment, with additional policies for certain critical applications or data. 

Simply put, data in any format should be regularly copied and archived for use in the event data recovery or restoration should become necessary. While this process sounds straightforward, many organisations today are not following through with these simple steps.

Here's the 6 things to include in your backup policy:

  1. Back up all mission-critical data during organisations off -peak hours this helps to avoid performance delays during office hours.
  2. All backups to be stored off-site, not be located at your businesses primary location. For example in the Cloud.
  3. Make sure all backups are encrypted (to protect data from falling into wrong hands.) (Your cloud vendor can ensure this for you)
  4. Only allow small number of trusted employee’s access to backups, this is a measure, to avoid unwanted intrusions. 
  5. Ensure your Vendor (if you have one) offers 24×7 support, this is essential in case an incident occurs outside of normal business hours. Cyber-attacks are usually random
  6. Work with a reputable cloud vendor that has been properly vetted to ensure the security and accessibility of business data.
Data can be lost through a number of mediums. The most common reasons for data loss include:
  1. Accidental deleting files / formatting drives
  2. Viruses and Malware
  3. Damage or loss of computers / Hard drives
  4. Power failures
  5. Fire/ Natural disasters.

A data backup policy will help your organisation determine, what information is backed up, when and how often. It describes how backups are administered and maintained, and details who is responsible for their management.

It is always best practice to have a designated team to run your business back-ups, these will be the employees or contractors you call on when you encounter a problem.

For more information on Data Back-ups and Disaster recovery read the Lanrex White paper on the difference between Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity, or continue reading our blog for more interesting articles.