Storing in the cloud
The cloud is perhaps one of the fastest growing areas in the IT sector. Many users love it and cannot get enough of it, while others avoid it because it seems too complex, or not worth the time. Once you try it for yourself, you’ll see it can be a super helpful tool for storing and retrieving data quickly.
Cloud computing, or cloud storage, simply gives you access to apps and data on the web, instead of a single computer or network. This allows you to access your data quickly, from anywhere.
Additional back up
With the introduction of Microsoft Office 365, small to medium sized businesses (SMBs) need to know about cloud computing, more so now than ever before. Analysts predict that by the end of this year, 30% of SMBs will be using Office 365. If you’re not familiar with Office 365 yet, it gives you the convenience of Exchange along with personal productivity and collaboration applications all in a cloud environment.
This means that all of your data from these programs will be stored in the cloud, instead of on your hard drive. Having your information stored in the cloud in a fantastic space and time saver, but you may want to consider backing up your data to additional places to ensure you do not lose those critical emails and contact information stored in the cloud.
The 3-2-1 rule
SMBs need to backup their data outside of Office 365 for several reasons. First, backing up is often less expensive than paying for archiving. Microsoft offers an archiving service, but there are many other options that are most cost effective, in my opinion.
Industry experts suggest practicing the “3-2-1” rule. This rule suggests you save three copies of your data, in at least two different places, with at least one copy of the data stored offsite. This ensures that you always have a viable copy of your data available. Finally, if the only copy of your data exists online, consider the increase of hackers.
If a hacker reaches your Exchange online account, you may not be able to retrieve all of your messages, and your confidential data may be compromised. By backing your data up, accidental deletions are not longer a worry.
While there are multiple options for backing up your data, they range in price and function. For most SMBs, one of the following options should suit your needs: back it up yourself to an external hard drive or USB, try a third-party journaling organization, or try out a third-party archiving service. The steps for backing up your data yourself are not too difficult. It’s definitely worth a try if you are budget-conscious.
If none of these options sound good to you, you can always opt for Microsoft’s archival option.