Backing up all your business data so it can be restored when needed seems like a simple thing. Yet many small businesses find backup strategies complicated and fail to properly protect their data as a result.
To ensure business continuity and that your company doesn’t suffer days of downtime due to a ransomware attack, it’s important to put a strong cloud backup strategy in place. You want one that includes the ability to quickly recover data in the event of a major data loss incident.
Small businesses make up over half of the victims of ransomware attacks.
Have you been dragging your feet on improving your backup and recovery capabilities? Don’t know where to begin when it comes to ensuring all your on-premises and cloud data is recoverable?
We’ve got a comprehensive step-by-step cloud backup strategy that small businesses can use to get started.
Step 1: Inventory All Devices
Before you can begin choosing your backup system, you need to first know what devices need to be backed up.
You should do a full inventory of all employee devices, this includes any desktop computers, laptops, and mobile devices that may contain data.
Don’t forget to include remote employees and any employee personal devices being used for work. You should also include servers and any other on-site devices holding any files.
You don’t want to leave any data behind, and doing an inventory of every physical device throughout your company will help ensure that your backups will be complete.
As many as 60% of all backups are incomplete.
Step 2: Inventory All Cloud Accounts
Next, you need to account for all your data that is in the cloud. Cloud storage and sharing platforms (OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.) are NOT the same as a backup.
Data in cloud applications and cloud storage can be edited, overwritten, and deleted, either accidentally or intentionally.
You need to inventory all cloud accounts that you have where your business data is stored so these can be backed up with cloud backup systems designed to back up cloud services data.
Include all platforms that could have any of your business information, such as:
- Productivity platforms (Google Workspace, Microsoft 365, etc.)
- Digital marketing/graphics platforms (Adobe Creative Cloud, email services, etc.)
- Sales management and CRMs (Salesforce, Zendesk, etc.)
- Company cloud-based training platforms
FYI: If you look at Microsoft’s Services Agreement in the Service Availability section, you’ll see that it recommends backing up all data stored in its services. It states, “We recommend that you regularly backup Your Content and Data that you store on the Services or store using Third-Party Apps and Services.”
Step 3: Define Your “Must-Have” Features for a Backup System
For this next step, it’s wise to get the help of a trusted IT professional, like GEEK911. You don’t want to miss any vital features needed to ensure that your data is not only backed up but also won’t take days to restore should you need it.
Some of the “Must-Have” features to look for when designing your small business data backup strategy include:
- Backups that are stored offsite (e.g., cloud)
- Full image backup (captures not only device files, but also the OS, settings, and software installed on a hard drive)
- Fast data recovery function
- Solid security and encryption
- Redundancy (i.e., the cloud backup provider should be backing up its systems as well)
- Flexible to use with multiple devices and cloud applications
- Ability to use managed backup (so your backups can be verified)
- Does not slow down user devices
- Fits your budget
Step 4: Put Together a Strategy, Including Your Backup Frequency & Other Policies
Before you just jump in with a backup solution, you want to create your strategy. This entails defining things like:
- How long you want to retain data before old backups are purged
- How much space you think you will need
- How often your backups will be done (daily, hourly, etc.)
- How backups will be monitored to ensure all data is backing up correctly
- Who will be responsible for managing data restoration processes when needed
- How often you’ll do drills of your backup and restoration process as part of your disaster preparedness
Having all this laid out ahead of time before you jump in with a backup solution will improve the success of your strategy and make the rollout easier.
Step 5: Choose Your Backup Solution(s)
Using the “Must-Haves” that you laid out and your backup strategy as a guide, choose your cloud backup solution or solutions. It’s helpful to work with an IT professional on this step as well because you can often get advice based upon years of experience working with other companies on their backup solutions.
Step 6: Implement a Managed Cloud Backup Strategy
Once your policies and backup solutions are ready, you can strategically roll out your cloud backup strategy. Make sure that it is monitored regularly to ensure all backups are running smoothly and any issues are addressed right away.
Need a Strong & Reliable Backup & Recovery Solution?
GEEK911 can help your Silicon Valley area business implement a successful and reliable cloud backup and recovery solution that ensures your data is properly protected.
Schedule a consultation by calling 1-866-433-5411 or reach us online.