ESS Distribution suggest seven simple ways of backing up your data on World Backup Day 2016 celebrated globally on 31st March.
World Backup Day is a global initiative to educate people about the increasing role of data in our lives and the importance of regular backups.
According to 2015 Backblaze Backup Awareness Survey which reveals how often people backup all of their data on their computers, 25% of people surveyed said they have never backed up their computer. In 2008, when such survey was conducted for the first time, 38% of people said they never backed up which certainly suggest some progress in awareness of data loss. However, among 75% of people surveyed last year who do perform data backups, only 8% back up daily while majority of people back up yearly (23%) or monthly (19%).
Security experts at ESS Distribution know for sure that backing up data is a very sensible thing to routinely get into the habit of doing. On this World Backup Day, they advise users following these seven steps to ensure their data is safe and backed up.
"Backing up data does not only make sense in case your device is stolen or lost, but in case your hard disk fails, which always happens all of a sudden when you don't expect it," says Sarvesh Singh, Technical Engineer at ESS Distribution Pvt. Ltd. "Being able to have more options for data recovery is crucial in case of malware infections. For example, if your computer becomes infected with ransomware, a nasty stuff that encrypts your files and threatens to delete them if you don't pay a ransom within a certain time period. Ransomware can be of less worry for those whose data is backed up and stored safely because you can anytime recover your files without paying anything to cybercriminals (we never encourage people to pay even if you don't have your files backed up".
Here are some of most common and simple options for people looking to backup up their data. We always advise to have more than one backup to be on the safer side (such malware as ransomware described above can try encrypting your backup files on your external storage if it is not disconnect from the infected system in time).
- USB pendrive: this is the easiest and the cheapest way as USB sticks are easily available at your doorstep. However, their portability means they are easy to lose. Also, the number of read/write cycles a pendrive can take is probably less than some other backup storage devices.
- External hard drive: most common method as external hard drives provide you larger capacity, better performance and cannot be lost easily. However, as any hard drive, the external ones are potentially open to malware infection and data loss in case of power cuts.
- Network Attached Storage: this option was initially considered more suitable for businesses, but provided the amount of data generated and stored by every household, the growing number of computers and other devices at home make dedicated wireless storage solution a good option, although price factor should be taken into account.
- Cloud Storage: there are plenty of third party cloud storage options, including completely free, paid, or free with paid extras. You can explore iCloud, Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, Mega and many other options. A good reason to go for cloud storage is automation possibilities, and plenty amount of space that is given even in free options. However, cloud backup requires good and continuous internet connection, which can be a challenge in a country like India. Safety is another concern as you have no control over security breaches in cloud services.
- BackUp and Recovery Software: backing up data using one of the options described above can be tough and time-consuming. However, there is a long list of both free and paid backup and recovery utilities that help you save copies of important files to a separate pendrive, hard drive or cloud. Having many configurations and tools, including file encryption, backup solutions generally support differential backups and incremental backups in addition to full backups which helps saving time on regular backups.
- Print out: As simple as that. Print out your contacts and passwords or other important files and store them in a very safe place. While it doesn't solve the backup problem for most if the users, it is certainly better than nothing as it can protect your e-mail and social media accounts in case of security breach. Also, it is not a bad option for non-tech-savvy people. Remember, though, that extensive printing challenges the environment.
- Prevent ransomware and other malware infections on your system. Protecting your system from ransomware and other malware that can harm your data is based on three basic rules:
Always use anti-malware software and a software firewall that will help identify threats or suspicious behavior.
Keep Windows and browser-related components (Java, Adobe, and the like), as well as all other software updated and patched.
Be careful with opening any kind of e-mail attachments and links sent over social media (For example, CryptoLocker, a ransomware threat that has been in the news lately, spreads via .zip files sent as email attachments)
This World Backup Day, you can educate yourself and others about importance of backup before it's too late!