If you are not confident about your current backup system, you should be thinking about what the best backup service is and how it can better protect your critical business data.
There are two important parts of a backup service. One is the backup software and technology being used, which we have reviewed in a previous post. The other is how it is managed, monitored and maintained to ensure it is working properly. We will focus on that here.
There are four critical components of a great backup service:
1. Backup Monitoring (By a Human)
Backup systems are notorious for failing on a regular basis. Sometimes they even tell you they’re working when they haven’t. That’s why it is critical to have ongoing monitoring in place of your backup system where someone is checking backups once a day to make sure they have run properly.
Many businesses and IT people substitute this with automated notifications. This is not sufficient and you should insist that a human being is going into your backup software and checking that all backups ran properly EVERY day.
2. Test Restores of Data
The only way you really know if your backup is working properly is when you restore a file, folder or entire server from backup. You do not want the first time you do this to be when you absolutely need that data.
The best way to be assured that your backup is properly functioning is to do monthly test restores of data. If you regularly pick files or folders to do a test restore with, you will be assured your data will be available when you need it.
The best backup services will report to you on how many backups ran, any issues and when the last test restore was done. As an executive, you shouldn’t need to get information every day about your backups but you should get a monthly report that summarizes how your data is being protected and identifies any issues.
4. Regular Review
Your IT management needs to meet with executive management on a regular basis and review what is being backed up, how it is being backed up and what isn’t being backed up, if anything. This discussion will help ensure any issues are identified.
There should also be a review of the business continuity and disaster recovery plan to ensure there are procedures in place in case there is an issue.
And the Best Backup Service in 2015 is…
We have written an eBook that details all the things you should get from a backup service. Our Much Better Backup Service that we provide to our clients includes all these items and we would be happy to review it with you to ensure your data is safe.