How to Minimize the Potential for Data Loss in Your Company
We all know the phrase ‘fail to prepare and prepare to fail’, and in business, this is particularly relevant. Successful businesses are founded on vast amounts of preparation to counter act the ‘what-if’ scenarios that can rock their very being. No situation can be unprepared for, you have to prepare for the worst and develop systems that can cope with the unexpected.
Disaster recovery plans are devised as a documented process or set of procedures that employees can follow to ensure business continuity in the event of a disaster. The disaster can be anything from flooded offices, an earthquake or even a terrorist threat. While the safety and well-being of employees is obviously the main priority in such circumstances, a close second is the need to recover and protect the IT infrastructure to ensure minimal damage to the workings of the business. The first ten days of computer outage are critical: if a company can’t get back online within this period, they rarely financially recover.
Great disasters are not the only reason for business downtime and data loss, and it is how companies deal with the potential threats.
Develop a positive workplace culture
It is all too easy to work for a company and think that the IT department are the only people that take responsibility for all things computer related, but employees must take personal responsibility for the actions that they take. Disgruntled employees are often to blame for businesses to lose critical data; they will be less inclined to do so if they have had a positive experience working in the company. Foster an open line of communication between employees and their managers so that any suspicious behaviors can be easily reported.
Another benefit of having a transparent and open working culture is that if mistakes do happen, the employee will feel able to report them, without the fear of retribution or long-term damage to the company. Only rarely are documents permanently lost (unless DIY solutions have been sought which often overwrite data), and companies such as Secure Data Recovery can restore documents that have accidentally been deleted.
Regularly update employees about current virus threats
Computer viruses cost, on average, US companies 55 billion dollars per annum. Training must take place within companies to educate the employee as to what can be downloaded, and what can’t. There are often global virus attacks that make the headlines, stay tuned in and up-to-date with reported viruses.
Test your backup procedures
Shockingly, 96% of workstations aren’t backed up, and even if they are, 34% fail to test their methods are adequate; and out of those that do test, 77% are found to be either not working or having backup failures. Whether you have a whole team of IT professionals or not, there is no reason for not backing up your documents. Again, communicate with your team the importance of doing so, and build back up into your workplace culture, make it as natural as refilling the copier when it’s out of paper. Do be aware that the quality of your backup is dependent on the quality of the tools you use: a thrift store USB stick will not provide the same quality or have the longevity of, for example, a cloud-based solution.