Every individual should have a comprehensive and multi-layered plan to back up their data. You’ve likely heard this advice before, whether you heard it from a business partner or just a friend trying to look out for you.
If you never thought much about the security of your data, or if you’re a chronic procrastinator, you might have a natural tendency to delay your potential decision to back up your data. But the sooner you get started with a comprehensive backup plan, the better.
In the sky, we’ll be looking at why data backup plans are so important and how you can start one immediately.
Why Data Backups Are So Important
We’ll assume for the purposes of this article that you care about your data. You’re probably keeping some assortment of important things in your digital format, such as photographs, schoolwork, contracts, and personal creative projects. These types of data are constantly vulnerable to a variety of different threats, including:
- Loss. Misplacing or “losing” files can make them practically impossible to recover.
- Theft. A stolen hard drive or laptop could cause your data to be gone forever.
- Corruption. All electronic devices have a finite lifespan.
- Physical damage. That lifespan gets even shorter if you, say, spill coffee on your computer.
- Cyberattacks. Don’t forget about external threats posed by cybercriminals.
If you’re extremely lucky, you won’t have to worry about any of these threats. But all it takes is one mistake or one poorly timed coincidence to render all of your information vulnerable to one or more of these threats.
If your data is backed up, these threats shrink from being totally devastating to being mere annoyances. Even if you lose all your data, you can simply restore a previous version of your system and move on with your life.
The First Step
If you’re not familiar with backing up your data, or if you don’t know how to get started, you might be intimidated to take the first step. That’s why one of the best ways to get started is taking advantage of free cloud storage. There are many companies that offer several gigabytes of free cloud storage to anyone who signs up for their services; you can take advantage of many of these services simultaneously to get access to all the storage volume you need without having to pay a cent.
You can always upgrade your plan later to get access to more storage or more features. But for now, you can focus on uploading and storing your most important information first.
A More Comprehensive Plan
After you take the first step, you’ll realize how easy backing up your data is, and you’ll be ready to put together a much more comprehensive plan. Depending on your risk profile and how much data you have to protect, your plan will range from being basic and straightforward to being intricately detailed and organized. But no matter what, you’ll need to consider the following:
- Prioritization. What are your biggest information security priorities? Which types of data can you afford to lose, and which ones must be protected at all costs? Eventually, you may get to the point where you’re backing up everything all the time, but it’s still important to know the hierarchy of value that you face.
- Multiple storage locations. Redundancy is also important in the world of data backups. Most cloud storage providers already store your data in multiple locations, so if one is ever physically threatened, there’s another layer of security involved. But you may also want to store your data in multiple locations for your own sense of security, tapping into the power of multiple cloud platforms or hosting some of your data with local storage.
- Organization. How is your day going to be organized? Do you have a system of folders that is intuitive enough to help you find what you’re looking for? Do you want to use a cloud platform with a built-in search feature that makes it even easier?
- Automation. Remembering to back up your data on a regular basis is both annoying and unreliable. It’s much more consistent and effective to automate your cloud backups; this way, you’ll never have to think about it or worry about it.
- Upgrades and improvements. How are you going to change and upgrade your data backup solutions over time?
Backing up your data can be intimidating if you’ve never done it before, but once you know the process and see how easy it is, you’ll be instantly relieved. It doesn’t take much time, money, or effort to keep your data secure, so there’s no excuse not to tap into these strategies.