Preventing Embarrassing Data Disasters

Posted on August 8, 2012 by Nikhil P Naik

Backing up home data has become second-nature to most of us. Whether backup is to a physical external drive, or to a cloud service, data recovery of treasured family photographs, household documents, and digital music libraries means that even the classic coffee-over-the-laptop scenario isn’t the end of the world.

It beggars belief, therefore, that less thought seems to go into business data recovery. Being unable to access customer, stock and accounting records, or even worse, losing them forever should highlight the importance of some kind of digital insurance. For even large businesses, losing everything in this way can be the difference between survival and sinking – instantly.

Protecting company data for easy retrieval doesn’t have to be a headache. There are a variety of options open to businesses of all sizes; physical back up – which should be stored off-site, cloud back up, and third party solutions, where expert companies take care of data storage needs with solutions tailored to individual business requirements.

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This kind of outsourcing is the most practical way to reduce data storage and recovery worries. For example, storage of physical tapes offsite, with the level of security a specialist firm can offer, gives any company the reassurance that they are in better overall control of their valuable data, and can recover from data losses – whether through equipment failure or disaster- possibly much quicker than their competitors could; essential in an increasingly difficult and competitive business world.

When there seems to be a new story every week about companies leaking data, being hacked, or simply being careless with customer information, it’s no wonder that organisations such as banks, hospitals, mortgage companies, and insurance brokers are increasingly looking towards outsourced solutions to protect customer confidentiality.


It’s also important to retain customer and client confidence – if a business can prove that they are secure, compliant, and diligent in their data storage, and that data recovery in the event of disaster means they can be up and running again in as little as a matter of hours, then it’s a huge boost to company reputation that is often reflected in sales, share prices, and customer loyalty.

Sadly, it often takes a disaster for businesses to recognise the importance of proper backup and storage. How much worse might the recent difficulties with the accounts of a certain bank’s customers have been if they hadn’t had adequate data recovery procedures in place to undo the efforts of the so-called new and improved software? Noise and fury about the inconvenience suffered is all very well, and understandable, but nobody loses out financially in the long run – all down to adequate data recovery planning for disaster scenarios.

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Businesses will often, naturally, be secretive about company information in an effort to hide their trade secrets from their competitors. However, data loss situations often mean that they end up hiding this information from themselves. It is essential to back up on a daily basis; checking error logs is also highly important, as it’s easy to miss crucial files that aren’t getting saved. Any company with a realistic outlook will also have a disaster plan, which should be tested on a regular basis – it goes without saying that a physical wipe-out of the building or equipment will make a financial buffer to replace hardware absolutely crucial, not to mention the scope for remote working if absolutely necessary.

A disaster plan should also include an emergency contact list of employees who can get the business up and running again in the shortest time possible. A hard copy of this made available to clients and customers can reap dividends in terms of confidence in your business.

A comprehensive, water-tight data recovery plan is essential to the long-term survival of any company. In a world where nothing is certain, having this most important form of insurance of all in place is vital.

About Nikhil P Naik

Nikhil Naik has a Master's Degree in Information Systems, and is currently working as a Software Engineer at Microsoft. He also loves playing cricket, listening to music, and traveling. Twitter Handle - @buzz_nikhil.


  1. Adam Brown says

    Hi Nikhil P naik,
    Thanks for your nice post !
    The data recovery plan is really useful to gain confidence from your customers for your business.

    Thanks again

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