Data protection and disaster recovery are now more important than ever before. Enterprise data is growing at a faster rate than ever before, to the point that many traditional backup solutions cannot keep up. That is where the cloud comes in.
With its immense flexibility, near-infinite capacity, and ease of connectivity, cloud storage makes for an attractive option when it comes to backing up your files and infrastructure. If you are not careful, however, it can be a double-edged sword. Make any of these five mistakes with your backup, and you will regret it.
There have been a number of high-profile data breaches in recent years. These should serve as a warning for your business. The cloud is only as secure as you make it. If you do not encrypt your data and control access through two-factor authentication, your backups are at risk.
Security is not something you can ignore, no matter where your backups are stored.
Failure to Test and Monitor
The cloud takes away a great deal of overhead – but that does not mean you can ignore it completely and expect everything to run like clockwork. It is imperative that you monitor your cloud for potential problems, and regularly test it to ensure it is still working as intended. Details you should be aware of include:
- File access logs
- Which files are being backed up, and whether or not they are being backed up properly
- Unusual or suspicious activity – ie. files being duplicated without cause, bandwidth spikes, etc.
Not Planning for Disaster
Having a cloud backup does not mean you don’t need to know what process to follow during a disaster. Automated disaster recovery is well and good, but the presence of it is meaningless if your staff does not know how to activate it. People need to know what processes to follow in a crisis, and who is responsible for doing what – the more confusion there is, the longer your downtime.
Focusing Only On Your Files
You are backing up documents, I am certain. What about taking snapshots of your software infrastructure? Critical applications and operating systems? While it is important to keep your files safe, having a snapshot of your OS that you can roll back to can significantly reduce your downtime.
You should not schedule your file backups several times a day – that is a recipe for wasted bandwidth. At the same time, you should not set it up so it only schedules once a month, either. Daily or weekly scheduled backups are a much better option – however the least resource intensive option is to utilize real-time incremental backups. Set the backups to occur during a period of reduced usage, so you do not have staff changing files around while the backup is occurring.
Keep Your Judgement Unclouded
The cloud is a powerful backup tool, but it can also cause more harm than good if you do not know what you are doing. Luckily, it is not particularly difficult to use. And if you would rather leave the technical details to someone else, you can always use a third-party solution like that which is offered by Liquid Web.