IS Magazine Blog

Backing up Your files Online

Dec 13 2010

online backup

Making a backup of your important files and or your mission critical work documents is essential to the smooth operation of day to day business. Ignorance is practically inexcusable with their being hundreds of options both online and offline. With the price of consumer electronics on a steady price decline, hard disc drives have become something that is available to everyone. Unable to install a hard disc? This is no issue with the arrival of portable / external hard discs. Portable hard discs allow you to back up all of your data and take it off site, which should also satisfy your disaster management planning by ensuring there are multiple copies of mission critical data at more than one location.

Online backup is becoming increasingly popular amongst both businesses and personal users as a way of making copies of their important files, which doesn’t involve on their behalf any physical hardware. Usually just a software or cloud based web application is needed to perform the transfers. The benefits of which are obvious, accountability for the safe storage is placed in the hands of the online backup company, who will no doubt have some insurance should this occur. Data is accessible remotely as well as on site; this means one or more users can access the files at any one time or restore additional backups. You can opt for packages which as your needs increase, accommodate your growth. Unlike traditional hard discs, once full you need a new drive, your storage needs can be reviewed and increased / decreased at your preference.

On the other hand you may need to sign up to an annual contract period typically of 12 months. While there maybe a trial period, after this you are committed for that length of time. The cost of online storage over a given period will exceed the costs of traditional backup methods, monthly payments will initially be low compared to the outlay of a piece of hardware or pieces of hardware.  Storing your data over public infrastructure, does make it available to potential exploit, such as hackers, man in the middle attacks and opportunists. The less your sensitive data is on public networks the better. Software which the backup company provide you may well be proprietary, should the computer system you access and maintain the backups on fail, you maybe unable to access your files at all. Broadband, though reliable is still susceptible to downtime and latency issues, this may delay your backup or not action them at all.

What ever you decide there is so much more than the affordability of services to consider, this is visible from this article. Choose wisely, as you may be stuck with this solution for some time and consider the availability and scalability over the costs. A good but expensive backup is better than all of your customer records or work documents being lost.

About the Author 

Isaac writes on behalf of The Caring Host who provide Green Web Hosting for their customers, offering a fair hosting guarantee - The Caring Host does not oversell their servers. Their servers are 130% powered by windmills, 30% more power returned to the grid than is used!