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The first step of Disaster Recovery

If you’ve ever lost your computer to a virus, had a computer or backup stolen, or experienced a fire or flood that has damaged your computer, then you already know the value of a backup.

A few days ago, I was explaining to a group of business owners that 140,000 hard drives crash every week in the US, and 60% of companies that lose their data will shut down within 6 months of the disaster. On a more personal level, what happens when you lose 15 years of family photos to a flooded computer (true story), or have your laptop and backup stolen from your car (isn’t that your business)?  In a global study completed in 2010, while 91.3% of respondants felt that a backup was important, 33% were too lazy to perform the backups, 13% didn’t know how to do them, and 39% were convinced that nothing would happen to them.

A overwhelmingly large group (89% of the respondents) do not have regular backup schedules. Strangely 76.6% or respondents said that they had lost data. Click here for the  full results

Between viruses, theft, natural disaster and the inevitable computer failure (in its many forms), having an online, offsite  backup strategy makes sense for home and business. It is the first real step of disaster recovery.

When looking for an online, off-site backup vendor, consider the following:

1 .. All data should be kept in Canada (or at least not allowed to sit on US servers). The US Patriot Act allows US authorities to gain access to data on American servers without notification to the data owners.

2 .. All data should be encrypted before it leaves your computer, and should be encrypted during transmission and while on the remote storage server.

3 .. Your should have the ability to backup what you want, and keep it as long as you want through broad support for multiple backup set(s) (the definition of what you want to backup), and retention policies (how long you keep it).

If you want more information about offsite, online backups, take a look at this backup article.

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