Data Backup and Disaster Recovery

The backing up of data is a crucial part of any thriving business. Due to its simplicity and ease, it can be overlooked by many. Listed below are the steps needed to ensure your business has a successful backup solution so information can be easily recovered if a situation were to arise. 

Data Backup vs. Disaster Recovery

The terms data backup and disaster recovery have been used interchangeably and although they are closely linked processes, they are not the same thing. The practices of data backup and disaster recovery target a specific part of the organization’s business continuity process.

Data backup is the act of creating a separate, physical copy of your data that can be restored at a later date, whereas disaster recovery is the act of restoring the data using the data backup. Ultimately, one cannot happen without the other; therefore, both data backup and disaster recovery are important to the successful restoration of information for a business. 

Data Backup

It is imperative to understand which data and how much data should be backed up. Not all data is as critical as others, so it is important to determine which information is necessary to keep the business operations afloat during any and all situations. As a general rule of thumb, one should attempt to back up as much data as possible. Ideally, the backup process should happen automatically without the need for employees to run it. User error has been known to negatively harm businesses as data is not backed up regularly, resulting in the loss of pertinent information.

Disaster Recovery

Disaster recovery is the process of restoring data after a disaster. The main way to measure the effectiveness of disaster recovery is speed: how fast can data be restored in order for business operations to run smoothly? It is important to consider where the data will be restored from. Best practices indicate that one should have at least three copies of data: two physical copies that can be found in the office on two different devices and one copy stored offsite in the cloud. One should also consider running automated tests to ensure the disaster recovery process will work the way it should if an unexpected disaster were to come up.

Does your business have a backup solution that can restore important data needed to run your company? AE Technology Group has an all-in-one Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) service that can provide preventative solutions to ensure your business can continue thriving when an unexpected situation arises. For more information or to learn more, give us a call today at (516) 536-5006.

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3 Reasons to Prioritize Data Backup and Disaster Recovery

A businessman selecting a button on a futuristic display with a Backup concept written on it.

One of the most critical solutions for a small business is a data backup and disaster recovery system. It is a crucial element of any business continuity plan, yet many organizations fail to implement one appropriately. Let’s discuss three of the best reasons you must consider backup and recovery now before it’s too late.

The Future Is Uncertain

In business, things can change in the blink of an eye. Countless variables must all be considered when planning for the future. However, specific issues that are impossible to predict could crop up, namely natural disasters and freak accidents that could cause data loss for your company. In situations like these, you’ll be glad to have data backup and disaster recovery on your side. Remember, plan for the worst, so you are never caught off-guard by it.

There are Factors At Play Outside of Your Control

As much as we would all like to think that we have a firm grasp on everything within our domain, there are countless factors in business that are outside of our control. Any business owner who deals with clients and employees or interfaces with the Internet (or technology in general for that matter) has to contend with opportunities for things to go wrong or unexpectedly. Even worse is the fact that hackers could create problems for your business. It’s better to focus your efforts on something you can control, which is protecting your business’ future through the use of data backup and disaster recovery.

It’s a Best Practice

Data backup and disaster recovery are best practices in place but don’t take our word for it. It’s an industry-standard best practice that all organizations should strive to achieve. We like to recommend that companies practice the 3-2-1 rule in which they have three copies of their data in two locations—the original, a copy on an in-house backup device, and a copy in the cloud.

It’s Easy!

The IT experts at AE Technology Group make it easy to implement a data backup and disaster recovery system. We can even automate the plan to take some of the pressure off your organization and eliminate some of the room for error in manual systems. To learn more, reach out to us at (516) 536-5006.

Don’t Let Data Backup Concerns Hold Your Business Back

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Your business is not unique in the sense that it stores and transmits data during its day-to-day routines. Whether it’s financial information for your clients or employee records, it is more than likely that your business holds some kind of critical data that your operations rely on throughout the workday. Would your operations be able to recover from a sudden loss of data?

While imagining this worst-case scenario might seem intimidating and downright scary, failing to do so is even worse for your business continuity. You owe it to everyone who works so hard to keep your business going to do all you can to protect it as best as possible. To work toward this goal, we recommend a solution that all businesses should utilize: data backup and disaster recovery. Data backup is one of those things that you don’t necessarily realize its true value until you need it most, and failing to have it could put your future on the line.

Data Backup vs Disaster Recovery

Data backups are copies of your business’ data that you can restore in the event of a disaster that destroys the original. These are particularly useful when you suffer a data loss scenario or security breach. Data backup has been done with tape for years, a process that involves setting the tape, running the backup, and storing the tapes in a place off-site in the event they are needed.

Tape is on its way out, however, due to issues that are prevalent in the way that it is fundamentally designed. Modern technology has addressed these issues, such as slow implementation and deployment speed, user error, and storage space. The cloud makes everything involved with the data backup and disaster recovery process so much easier by eliminating the possibility of user error, speeding up the process, freeing up on-site storage, and fully automating the process.

Data backup is only one part of a successful disaster recovery solution. You also need to make sure that you are actually able to deploy these backups when they are needed most. Since disasters can disrupt operations so profoundly, you want to have your backups ready to go in the event of data breaches, natural disasters, or user errors. Failing to have these data backups available puts your operations in jeopardy not just from an operational standpoint, but also from a cost perspective when you factor in downtime and lost productivity.

Your disaster recovery solution should aim to minimize downtime through the use of a cloud-deployed backup to temporary hardware. It’s not meant to be a permanent solution; it just keeps you in business while you work to replace it. A common rule you might hear about is the 3-2-1 rule of data backup. You should have three copies of your data ready to go at a moment’s notice: one on-site or on-network, one located in the cloud for ease of restoration, and one in a secure off-site data center. This redundancy makes for an ideal solution and certainly one that minimizes downtime and data loss.

Implement BDR Today

A data backup and disaster recovery solution like BDR is the best way to approach your business’ continuity concerns. AE Technology Group has the knowledge and expertise to walk you through this process every step of the way, from determining your specific backup needs to the deployment of solutions. To learn more, reach out to us at (516) 536-5006.

Data Backup Protects Everything You’ve Built

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When you have a thorough and powerful data backup strategy in place at your business, you are protecting your operations, your employees, and your customers from an array of terrible scenarios. Unfortunately, many businesses don’t think of data loss in the terms it should be considered in, a complete travesty. Today, we thought we would briefly describe the long and short of data backup and recovery practices that can put your business in a position to secure and restore your data should it be corrupted, destroyed, or stolen.

The Role of Data Backup

The first thing you should know about a backup solution is that it has to take into account the data and systems it is backing up. If your staff is actively adding data to backed up databases, you will want to enlist the use of incremental backup solutions that can be updated as they work, rather than backing up the whole system once per day. The benefit of this is obvious. With solid data redundancy, you won’t have to worry about extremely expensive operational redundancy.

Most modern businesses have a lot of data that they should protect. To effectively do that, we recommend that businesses use the 3-2-1 rule. This states that any organization that wants to ensure data redundancy keep three separate copies of their data, with two being kept onsite for fast recovery and one being kept off site, preferably in a cloud-hosted data center. This ensures that any data is protected and ready to restore regardless of the circumstances surrounding your data loss. Your data is effectively protected against malware attacks, true disasters like fire or flood, or corruption or loss from human error, which unfortunately happens more than anyone would like. By having multiple copies of data, especially copies that are set to automatically backup incrementally, you are ensured that if you need to recover data, that you have as much of your data as possible.

How It Affects Disaster Recovery

Your disaster recovery strategy is likely more than just restoring data from backup, but make no mistake about it, it is an integral part of the process. When your business is hit with a data loss situation, the speed in which you are able to recover from that event is one of the most important metrics, as sustained downtime can hurt any business. So, with getting data restored quickly being a top priority, the 3-2-1 rule becomes important. By having a backup on hand to restore from, your recovery time will be reduced as compared to restoring from the cloud. However, if your business is dealing with a disaster scenario, and you lose the ability to restore from onsite backup, your cloud backup can be used as a server until you can get onsite hardware up and running again.

At AE Technology Group, we offer a backup and disaster recovery (BDR) service that works for any business. Not only do we adhere to the 3-2-1 rule, we have a team of trained IT technicians at the ready to help get your business’ data back, and get your operations running quickly. If you would like more information about the BDR service and how it is a complete solution for your business’ needs, contact us today at (516) 536-5006.

Strengthening Business Continuity Is Urgent For Financial Services

strengthening business continuity is urgent for financial services

While most businesses handle at least some customer personally identifiable information on a daily basis, there is little more important than a client’s financial information which consists of what is likely a significant portion of their life savings. Firms that manage investment and savings accounts spend years cultivating relationships with their clients, with complete trust as one of the foundational pillars of these relationships. That’s why strengthening business continuity is so important for financial services organizations.

With data hacks on the rise, financial services organizations must do everything they can to ensure their client’s investments are safe and secure. This also means ensuring they are able to deliver continuous service such as deposits and withdrawals, and even simple account review 24/7/365. Financial services firms must also protect against identity theft and/or impersonation, which can even be more devastating to clients as these types of crimes affect not only their investments, but almost every other aspect of their daily life.

Business Continuity Defined  

In order to understand business continuity, it’s important to define it as it relates to data and information systems. In order for a firm to have continuity of services, they must have a complete solution, not just a plan for backup, but also recovery in the event of a disaster. This means client data is protected both on-premise and in the cloud in order to keep data safe and secure, even in the event of a device failure.

Do Your Backups Measure Up?

Companies still working under the impression that a daily back-up of all corporate data is sufficient, are at high risk for significant problems. This traditional way of viewing backups overlooks many gaps including instances such as when those in charge forget to perform a backup or the process fails in some way. Other potentially disastrous scenarios include losing an entire day’s worth of work after a failure and/or lack of backup validation, which is then discovered to be useless when needed for a restoration.

Other issues can occur from only keeping backups on-site, which means if a disaster such as a tornado, flood, or fire should occur, the backups become useless. Incomplete backups that only include raw data, rather than including other crucial data such as server configuration and application files means it could take several days to get fully back online in the event of a system failure. 

Finding the Optimal Solution

At this point, smaller financial services organizations may recognize they simply do not have the IT resources to implement the right protective strategies to safeguard their clients from irreparable financial harm. Fortunately, there is still a way to fully protect clients and their investments in the event of a disaster, whether natural or manmade. 

For smaller financial organizations, the ideal solution is to outsource their IT needs to a company that also has experience in the financial industry. By partnering with such a firm, smaller companies can be confident they are doing everything they can to protect not only all the valuable assets and information pertaining to their clients, but every online function related to operating their firm. 

An IT firm specializing in the financial industry can handle all compliance and regulatory issues that go along with protecting client data, as well as offering their expertise in the areas of timely hardware and software updates and maintenance, and ensuring the integrity of backups and their restoration process in the event that action becomes necessary. A specialized IT firm can also establish and provide continuous review and maintenance of system security practices within the financial firm. With a firm that specializes both in the IT and financial industries, financial services firms can have the best of both worlds and know they are doing everything they can to maintain the assets and the trust of their clients for decades to come.    

If you are a financial services firm and are ready to update your data backup strategy to industry standards, please contact us.