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Online Back-up: How not to Back-up and How to get it right

What is online backup?

Online backup means to save data from your computer hard drive to a remote server or computer using a network or online connection. Online backup systems make use of the Internet and cloud technology to provide remote data storage solution with minimal hardware requirement.

Data is the lifeblood of many modern businesses and vast swathes of companies have grown up focusing purely on how to understand and exploit business value from that data.

Is online back-up safe

With that in mind, it is of little surprise that disaster recovery and online backup systems have also been getting increasing attention of late. Companies want to be sure that should their systems fail, or their data become corrupted, they have a safe and reliable mechanism to restore that data as quickly as possible.

What to back up

Deciding precisely what data to back up will depend on your business priorities and regulatory environment. You should work with business managers to understand the data that is essential to the running of the business, or that could hold significant value in the future. For teams that are deep into data analysis, it is important to be able look at variations over time, therefore data points that look to be insignificant in isolation could be incredibly value as part of a longer data stream.

Some industries will have specific regulatory requirements to hold on to transaction data for a set period of time. This could also include KYC data for customers, like identity documentations.

When to back up

Backup frequency will also be largely dependent on how vital it is to the running of your business and the financial implications of being without it. It will also depend on how quickly new data flows into your business.

For business critical data, in a data intensive environment, you may choose to back up every day or even intraday. However, less critical data you might back up only on a weekly or monthly data.

Equally, data that you are simply holding for regulatory purposes you may decide to back up less frequently depending on how stringent the regulation is.

Cloud Back-up systems

Computer backup systems have fallen dramatically in price since the introduction of cloud storage. You can now leverage cloud platforms as a simple and scalable way of backing up your information without ever having to worry about the infrastructure.

You can also move the data to different tiers of storage, with different price points, to suit your needs. For example data that is held for regulatory purposes, but rarely needs to be accessed can be stored very cheaply.

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