Cyber security is unfortunately a growing area of concern for many organisations. High profile breaches are becoming more and more common and new attack vectors are reported every day. While companies continue to add multiple layers to their IT networks, these new vulnerabilities require you to stay one step ahead.  

In our experience, we’ve come across many businesses who are aware of the risks but are still adopting ineffective or costly backup methods for their business data. There are differing reasons for adopting this route and while these can get the job done, they can be ineffective in comparison to cloud backup solutions. In this article we cover some of the most common backup solutions and explain the issues you may encounter when using these methods.

Backing up to disk

Many organisations may find backing up to hard disk an effective method when it comes to backup and disaster recovery, but while disk backup is widely used, it does come with its disadvantages. As disks are always running, they can require additional costs on electricity and cooling. Long term storage may also cause problems as disks may fail and ultimately lead to data loss. They are also difficult to restore from.

Offsite backups

Local backups stored on hard drives provide a sense of security in case small issues occur. If a single file becomes corrupted, backups stored on the server can quickly retrieve those files and restore them. Offsite backups provide a similar sense of security but on a much larger scale. However, as with most things there are drawbacks you should be aware of.  Physical disks need to be taken to an offsite location which can throw up a range of problems. Depending on how far you need to travel to retrieve the data your business will suffer downtime, as well as a potentially significant loss of revenue. 

Cost is another factor you need to consider with offsite backups. For this backup method you will need multiple disks. For example, in many cases you may carry out daily local backups, then a weekly backup and if you were to take these offsite transporting these disks or whatever the data is on can be costly. In most cases storing your data offsite requires a third party who in most cases will normally charge to store the disks. Couple this with the number of disks you have, and costs can mount up very quickly.

Backing up to tape

Tape – yes tape! Believe it or not, we have come across businesses that are still using tape as their primary backup method. The longevity of tapes is the main reason why tape backups are still widely used by large enterprises and if maintained properly, tape drives can store required data for 30 years or more. However, these days there are much better storage options for your data and tape backup comes with its disadvantages. Tapes are generally written to in a serial manner. A single tape, for example, may contain a complete VM or a set of many VMs. If someone were to gain possession of a single tape, a huge amount of business-critical data could be exposed, and the data is easily accessed.

As we all know, data is a key asset for all businesses which is why it’s important to ensure its safety against potential threats. Whether it’s cyberthreats, human error or natural disaster, having a cloud backup solution is always beneficial. If you’d like to explore your cloud backup options, we can help. Contact our team.