3 Backup Strategies for Keeping Your Business’ Data Safe and Secure

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3 Backup Strategies for Keeping Your Business’ Data Safe and Secure

Picture this scenario:

You’re a CEO and Founder of a hot new app that’s generating loads of new customers every single day.

Naturally, you’re feeling good about yourself. And why shouldn’t you? Your business is booming, everything seems to be going fine, you’re enjoying the fruits of your labor and watching people spread good words about your brand all over the Web, until one day – a certain bug shows its ugly face in your code, causing data loss in certain versions of the company’s Mac application. It starts deleting images and other attachments under specific conditions.

The horror, right?

You try everything, but regardless of much money and effort you invest in recovering your data, sooner or later you’ll have to face the facts and accept that your data is lost forever.

Even though this scenario basically brings your worst nightmares to life, it still sounds quite unlikely, doesn’t it? It still feels like something that could never actually happen to an actual business?

Well, you’re wrong – this exact scenario happened to Evernote, forcing the company to contact its top users and explain to them why, for example, a crucial part of their PhD thesis is now lost forever.

Not a pretty picture, is it?

As you can imagine, those type of conversations weren’t that easy to handle. They brought a lot of stress and dissatisfaction to the table, forcing more than a few Evernote users to instantly delete their account and move their notes to a whole new place.

The Evernote case is just one of many. There are literally thousands of examples concerning data loss that can be found online. Even though losing your information at first seems like something that only affects careless businesses, the sad truth is – it could happen to everyone. Yes, even major companies like Google.

I remember like it was yesterday – Back in August 2015, Google reported it’s lost some of their cloud customers’ data. After the local power grid got struck by lightning 4 times (yes, you read it correctly – 4 times), the discs at some of Google’s data centers in St. Ghislain (Belgium) got instantly fried and wiped clean.

Heck, just a couple of days ago, Yahoo disclosed that 1 billion of their user accounts have been compromised.

Yes, you read it right. One billion.

So, what can we learn from these examples?

Well, among other things, that data loss can happen for any number of reasons.

Buggy software, natural disaster, higher forces, awful coincidences, hardware failure, data corruption, frequent hacker attacks – these are just some of the events that could rob you of your precious company and customer information.

The Loss Of Your Data Will Most Likely Destroy Your Business

If you’re someone who makes his/her bread and butter from what you do or sell online – then your data is everything to you. It’s the lifeblood of your company.

Let’s get back to Google and Evernote for a second. Knowing how these two brands operate, you could say that user data is basically everything to them. People use Evernote to store and organize their files in an always accessible place.

That being said, if Evernote loses its user data, it’s only a matter of time when the guys behind this band will be forced to close-up shop. I know this seems harsh – but, believe it or not, research has shown that 60% of companies that lose their data will shut down within 6 months of the disaster.

That being said, you cannot really afford to expose your information to any risk.

So, having all this in mind, how does one protect himself/herself from data loss?

Easily, by applying one of these backup strategies to your business.

Remote Backups

This is the best of the best. For those who are not familiar with the term, “remote backup” refers to a method of data storage in which files, folders, and basically all types of information, are being stored on a safe remote server.

Even though most people understand that having copies of your files locked safely away safe in a secure and secluded place is the right thing to do – most of them never really take the time to actually create their backups.

They also have “something better to do”, which is ironic, when you understand what’s the heart and soul of their business.

Like I wrote before, most of them feel like this sort of thing will never happen to them, and that’s why, sooner or later, their business suffers huge losses that have extremely negative effects on their overall reputation and financial situation.

Unlike most of them, I just don’t really feel comfortable exposing myself to unnecessary risk, especially when I know that this kind of horror can be easily avoided just by investing in Offsite Backups.

We at AltusHost truly understand the importance of data.

That’s why we offer Offsite Backup services on our powerful Storage Servers, located in Amsterdam, Netherlands. All backed up data is encrypted for an additional layer of protection. It doesn’t really get any better than that.

Leave your backups to professionals and you won’t have to worry about a thing.

3-2-1 Backup Strategy

Second best, but still effective. In a nutshell, this strategy is all about creating 3 copies of your data, 2 of which are created on different mediums, and 1 on an additional external hard drive. I know this seems a little too complicated and paranoid, but believe me – you can never be too careful. Especially when the future of your business is on the line.

Even though a lot of people feel like having an onsite backup is enough, we AltusHost know that better. We know this particular type of copy is also susceptible to data loss. Especially if your copy is close to the original, and there’s even a slightest of chance that both of your copies can be affected by the same disaster.

As I already wrote about above – your data is your company’s lifeblood, which means that you need to do everything in your power in order to make sure that you never lose it. That’s why we advise you to always have multiple backups of various different mediums.

Private Cloud Storage

Private cloud storage offers scalable, easy-manageable and provisioned storage to all types of users who are in need of a digital place for keeping their private data intact.

I know, after hearing about those celebrity data scandals, on one really trusts the cloud. These days, people don’t really feel comfortable placing their data in the hands of third-party public cloud vendors.

Why? – Well, for various different reasons. First and foremost of all, because cloud services are often threatened by cyber criminals. They know that most people store their data online. However, if you know where exactly your data is being stored and your vendor allows your to have full visibility of the cloud – this could do the trick.

You need to know what data is being shared, as well as how a third-party vendor plans to deal with potential data breaches. Researching cloud vendors before starting a business relationship with them is of utmost importance.

4 Security Essentials to Utilise On Your Ecommerce Website

Where there is money, there are thieves, too. At the moment, ecommerce is the “it” thing because it is a lucrative business. More and more people opt for buying online instead of shopping at a brick and mortar store. This rush is exactly what is making ecommerce popular with the shoppers. However, it is also popular with hackers and frauds. The storage of credit card data is especially convenient for conducting frauds and scams. For that reason, people could become reluctant to shop online. Therefore, making your website secure is essential for keeping the trust of your customers.

With that in mind, here are a few security requirements you need to implement to your ecommerce website. These would help you build credibility and maintain a solid customer base.

Pick the Right Platform

The platform would be the basis of your business. This is where it all starts. Therefore, going with the most secure platform is key. Luckily for you, there are several to choose from, like Magento or Shopify, which are among the best. Also, the platform can be hosted or self-hosted, depending on the type. If you choose the self-hosted type, you should find a web host that would service your store and maintain it for you. Go with someone that can be trusted and who is highly professional.

Furthermore, when deciding which platform to go with, make sure you get everything out of it. For instance, check if you can change the design to suit your brand, and if it would look pleasing to  customers. Additionally, make sure that the platform has all the features you want to employ for your store, and that it functions without any glitches and bugs.

Have Your Website Monitored Regularly

Hacks can occur out of nowhere, and sometimes, it could take you hours or even days to notice them. That is why you should have regular, daily security checks. You can even have real-time checks, which would allow you to follow the behaviour of the visitors and quickly pinpoint suspicious movements.

In addition to regular control, your website should also have several layers of security. Have your hosting provider add layers like search queries, firewalls, and contact forms. Plus, demand from the customers to create strong passwords, which are tougher to crack. However, just in case a hack occurs, you should create a crash plan for the website. This would allow you to quickly recover and go back online.

Lastly, you could put the website through extensive testing, such as seeing how easy it is to break the code and hack the site. Also, finding vulnerabilities is a good idea, too. Knowing where you lack security could save you from a lot of trouble.  

Don’t Store Sensitive Customer Data

Sensitive data is what hackers aim for. All the credit card numbers, CVV2 numbers, and other related information are at risk of being exposed and used for stealing from numerous bank accounts. Obviously, there is no need to put your customers through this. So, abstain from keeping all this data on your servers. First of all, it would be risky. Secondly, it would be against the law and PCI standards.

Use SSL and Comply to PCI

Speaking of PCI (Payment Card Industry), you must always be in compliance with the set standards. If you get breached, you would be marked as someone who does business recklessly by putting your customers in danger of being robbed. These security standards were specially made for merchant businesses that work with sensitive credit card information. Therefore, if your ecommerce website violates these rules, the customers have every right to report you, which could lead to hefty fines.

On top of that, make sure you also use SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) authentication during the communication process between your site and the customer. This would ensure that the data being shared is secure and protected. For instance, by using the SSL certificates, your site would be labelled as secure, with the green address bar and an SSL security seal. These details let your visitors know that the site is safe and legit.

Clearly, there are many risks when it comes to online shopping and sharing private information. Your visitors risk being robbed, or even having their identity stolen. In order to stop this from happening, your ecommerce website has to be an impenetrable fortress. Just remember that you are doing this for both your sake and your customer’s sake, as well.

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