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Contingency planning: why it’s never optional

Famous last words:

“Eh, I backed up last week. It’s not that big of a deal if we lose things from this week.”

“But I have iCloud, Google Drive, and Dropbox! That means everything is backed up!”

For the record, none of the above are proper backup solutions. You need “real” contingency planning.

Plan A: Business as Usual

Hopefully the day-to-day interaction with your business-critical information if fairly seamless.  (If it’s not, call us.)  This should be how things are 99% of the time.  We’d say the expectation of having access to that data is also up there.  Let’s say this is 95-100% of uptime.  However, that number can be impacted greatly if something unexpected occurs.  Theft, power surges, office accidents, and natural disasters are all very real possibilities.

Last month, we and our clients experienced Hurricane Irma here in Miami. Although the storm spared us any major damage, the conversations around backups turned from a “some day” contingency plan to an immediate need. Fortunately for us and our clientele, nearly everyone had both local and offsite backups. To operate business without some combination of the two is just asking for a nightmare scenario.

Plan B: Onsite

In most business settings, the office will house a combination of workstations and a server or two. Backing up locally ensures the fastest spin-up time in case the main server or workstation goes down. This can look like a few different solutions depending on your setup. This includes Apple’s built-in Time Machine backup system, and creating an identical copy of the setup via a clone or mirror. The point is that there is something onsite that is Plan B in case Plan A fails. Some offices have multiple levels of on-site redundancies, which is never a bad thing.

Plan C: The Cloud

For Plan C, we have to look up at the clouds. Things may look a little different here, but the general idea is the same. If everything is lost on site, there should be a copy sitting on an (extremely secure) remote backup server. Some provide a basic backup and restoration service, which can take some time. Others allow you to see, access, and even work on your files. It all depends on what your urgency of access is and features requested. There is something for everyone!

We here at Start On Technology have spent the last few years working our way through the forest of backup solutions. Luckily, we feel we’ve found the perfect blend of solutions for the average small/medium business setup. Perfect backups, as well as managing the rest of your office’s technology, is available through our managed IT service plans. Check out our Solutions page for more details.

Remember: always have an iron-clad backup solution! You may know you need it until it’s too late.