While this may be hard to believe, small businesses are far from having a data loss prevention plan in place. While hardware failures may be rare in real life, they do occur. If you don’t have a way to recover data, your business may suffer greatly.
Nowadays, any business has a website. This means that they have a server with a hosting company somewhere, a server that hosts their website, their email accounts and various business documents like marketing materials, user manuals and so on. Having such materials online is a must as they need to be readily available to anyone needing them.
Your hosting company may have a data loss prevention plan in place but it may not be available for you. For instance, if you have an un-managed hosting account, you won’t be able to enjoy proper technical support from your hosting provider. If anything happens to your server, the host will only acct if hardware failures occur. What do they actually do? They replace the failing hardware and eventually install the operating system and the web server software. That’s it. It is your job to reconstruct your data (website, additional documents). The problem is that you may not know how to do that, or even worse, you may not have a back-up of your data. When that happens, your business will suffer severe consequences due to inadequate measures.
How to prevent disasters with a data loss prevention plan
First, check with your hosting provider what kind of a plan you have with them. You may have a dedicated server and paying quite a lot for it every month, but that doesn’t mean you’re ensured against disasters. Your server could be un-managed (and most of the times it is, as a managed server costs a lot more and you surely didn’t want to opt for that) which means it is up to you to save your data.
This is where your IT personnel comes in. They have to lay a data loss prevention plan and stick to it. This includes setting up the server to make daily, weekly and monthly backups and have them stored on another drive in the server. While this might save your business, it is not totally disaster proof. A second layer of backups must be created and stored off-site. That off-site medium could be another server you have in another location, or could be your personal computer or a storage facility in your office.
Without getting paranoid about the need of having backups stored in special vaults (which is the most reliable option), you need to have a data loss prevention plan with at least two layers of backups. This will prevent disasters from happening and in the event that your server suffers hard drive failures, you will be able to quickly restore your precious data in order to avoid business loss.