“Cyber attacks are how businesses lose data. Right?”
Not exactly. A growing percentage of small and medium businesses (SMB) experiencing data issues found a growing percentage of problems stem from human errors and natural disasters. This is despite the mistaken belief “most” losses arise from cyber threats. “Being prepared” really does increase the chances your business can survive a data loss. In fact, the 2011 SMB Disaster Preparedness Survey from Symantec showed only half of the respondents to the survey responded they even HAD backup and data recovery plans in place. Even still, it is unknown if those backup plans were adequate.
“The power went out this weekend!”
A power loss can wreak as much havoc to a business as many other potential problems. But other sources of problems often include employee errors and simple neglect. The results from that same Symantec survey estimated small and medium businesses experienced a median of six outages per company in 2010. As companies across the greater Boston area keep support staff lean and mean, this puts more pressure on a stressed out staff.
“Dude where’s my data?”
Don’t feel bad: We have discovered on several occasions that the data was not actually backed up at all! Again, from the Symantec survey, only half of respondents noted they backed up at least 60% of their data (so, 40% if data will be automatically lost). Thirty-one percent of respondents do not back up email, twenty-one percent do not back up application data, seventeen percent do not back up customer data.
“Ummm, what about the new office location?”
Remote offices and news locations can be sources of data loss or compromise. Remote (or virtual) offices may not have the same data protection or backup policies and procedures in place like the main office. Are tape backups taken off-site? What is the policy? Even in the main office, are consistent backups created on a regular schedule? What is done about failed back ups, what are the troubleshooting policies? As your business grows, there could be some gaps in your policies and procedures for backing up your data. Give us a call to discuss how we can help patch up and cover the potential problems.
“Backup? What Backup?”
In the Symantec survey, we learned less than HALF the companies responding backed up their data once per week and twenty-three percent of companies back up daily. Overall, one of the most significant problems we found was the lack of preparation. But that lack of preparation really COSTS. The median DAILY cost for SMB downtime is $12500. That is the median cost per day. Not for large companies, but for small and medium sized businesses.
One last item we will mention. Do you (or your employees) store important emails (and attachments) in the inbox? On February 27, 2011, a software bug on Gmail caused 120,000 users to lose all of their emails (the messages were successfully restored from tape backups).
If you would like to view the Symantec report, you can find it here: