Why Data Backup Matters

Loss of your company’s sensitive and important data is no longer a question of if, but when. Data loss in the corporate setting is bound to happen sooner or later. As such, it is important to backup your corporate files.

What is Data Backup?

A data backup is the copying of sensitive and important data for the purpose of being able to restore them in case of data loss. By having several copies of your organization’s valuable data, it does not matter if one is destroyed as you can easily get another copy.

Data Loss Causes

Your organization’s valuable data is susceptible to potential loss through the following:

1. Hardware Failure

Hardware failure is bound to happen. Computers have a lifespan. They cannot be used forever. No matter how efficient your organization’s computers are today, one day they are going to deteriorate. The hard disk and chips are some of the sensitive parts of the computer that can cause hardware failure. 

The specific part of the computer where data is stored called the “hard disk” has a rotating disc that holds a very delicate device that spins. A sudden blow to this sensitive device will greatly damage the device. And when the lifespan of the computer is taken into consideration (which can be calculated based on the warranty period), the odds of data loss threat can’t be disregarded.

Electricity surges, sudden power failures and large sudden changes in voltage can cause defects on computer “chips” – the processing and memory units of the modern digital computer.

2. Human Errors

Human frailties may cause damage to your organization’s valuable data. Anyone in your company may delete files, use a wrong additional hardware, mistakenly installed a software, incorrectly install device drivers, and many other human errors.

3. Natural Disasters

Our ever-changing environment is unpredictable. Natural disasters – flooding, wildfire, hurricane, earthquakes, sinkhole, volcanic eruption, cold and ice storms – cannot be ignored.

4. Cyber Attacks

Many companies in recent years have lost their valuable data due to cyber attacks. The growing threat of ransomware, in particular, shows the importance of data backups.

According to a Google-led study (PDF), ransomware victims have paid $25 million to hackers in the last two years. A typical ransomware infects users’ computers, locks their documents, and demands a hefty sum of money – typically Bitcoins – to get them back.

WannaCry is one example of a ransomware. In May of this year, hundreds of thousands of computer users worldwide were locked out from their computers, with a notice on their computer screen that a certain sum of money (between $300 and $600 to be paid in Bitcoins) have to be paid first before the computer can be unlocked. WannaCry attackers, however, made a mistake in their coding that they themselves cannot unlock locked computers as they are unable to identify which victims have paid the ransom.

Just a few days after WannaCry was released into the wild, in June of this year, crooks released NotPetya, a malicious software that has the characteristics of a ransomware, including the locking of the computer and ransom demand on the computer screen.

But while the ransomware attackers’ main goal is for profit, the NotPetya attackers have a different goal in mind, that is, to totally destroy and damage all computer files without the hope of getting them back. In this sense, NotPetya malicious software is considered as a “wiper”, not a ransomware.

Cost of Data Loss

Some companies cannot put a price tag on data loss as some information is too valuable and cannot be recreated. There are a growing number of companies, however, that have put a price tag on data loss, specifically loss as a result of cyber attacks as these have devastating blows to productivity. According to delivery company FedEx, the NotPetya cyber attack cost the company $300 million.

“Operating results declined due to an estimated $300 million impact from the cyberattack, which was partially offset by the benefits from revenue growth, lower incentive compensation accruals and ongoing cost management initiatives,” FedEx said.

Largest shipping container company Maersk, which was similarly affected by NotPetya, said that the cyber attack cost the company between $200 million and $300 million.

“In the last week of the quarter we were hit by a cyber-attack, which mainly impacted Maersk Line, APM Terminals and Damco,” Maersk said in a statement. “Business volumes were negatively affected for a couple of weeks in July and as a consequence, our Q3 results will be impacted. We expect that the cyber-attack will impact results negatively by USD 200-300m.”

The financial losses of these large companies show the importance of data backups. When it comes to backups, paranoia is not an exception but a norm.

If your organization has backed up your data, productivity is less of your concern. Backing up your corporate files regularly will help your organization avoid the crushing moment when all the hard work of everyone in the organization is gone.

Storage nowadays has become affordable that it makes sense to backup everything. Local or in house storage and cloud storage are the two ways that your company can backup your corporate files.

Cloud storage offers advantages that cannot be found in local storage. For instance, if your organization’s office is flooded as a result of a major hurricane, this natural disaster will likely wipe out your local storage. It is not, however, a question of choosing one over the other – cloud storage versus local storage. Having these two types of backups will give you peace of mind.

At GenX, we offer the following data storage management services:

  1. One-time installation of all required hardware and software
  1. Varied data storage solutions, such as cloud-based backup systems
  1. Centralizing backup systems, for more reliable and streamlined services
  1. Offsite storage of sensitive information to protect against data loss due to office hardware damage
  1. Thorough testing of backup and storage procedures for ensured reliability of disaster protocols
  1. Continued technical support through our GenX helpdesk services

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