In today's data-driven world, businesses must prioritise protecting their critical information. With increasing cyber threats, plus risks of data loss through natural disasters and system failure, a single backup is not enough. The 3-2-1 Backup Strategy provides a practical solution to safeguarding your key business data, ensuring that two backups are always available to be recovered from.
What is the 3-2-1 Backup Strategy?
The 3-2-1 backup strategy is a rule of thumb for keeping your business data safe. It's simple, easy to remember, and can be the difference between a minor inconvenience for data recovery and a catastrophic data loss. Here's how it breaks down:
3 - Total copies of your data (1 primary usable copy and 2 backups).
2 - Of the copies (1 primary usable copy & 1 backup) are local, but on different devices or platforms.
1 - Copy is offsite, in a different secure geographical location.
The inclusion of two backups ensures that if one fails, another is available, providing greater redundancy and peace of mind.
Benefits to Businesses
In the event of a Cyber Attack, hardware failure or other natural disasters, the 3-2-1 Backup Strategy could be the essential element to allow your business to recover from a potentially business-ending situation.
1. Redundancy: With two backups, there is less chance of losing vital information.
2. Flexibility: Using different platforms and locations means you're less dependent on one system, in the event of a natural disaster you could even restore to an off-site or cloud location to allow you to continue working.
3. Cost-Effectiveness: Losing data can be incredibly expensive, even resulting in the closure of businesses that cannot continue to work without their data. Investing in a comprehensive backup strategy is a cost-effective way to ensure that your business can continue to operate.
4. Compliance: Many industries require stringent data protection and validation measures. The 3-2-1 method helps businesses adhere to these standards.
Cloud Storage is Not a Backup
A common misconception, by people and businesses, is that storing data in the cloud makes it safe. While cloud storage provides many benefits, such as more flexible accessibility, convenience, and even increased data redundancy within the data centre, it should not be confused with a backup. If data in the cloud is corrupted or accidentally deleted, it may be lost permanently, and cloud providers do not accept liability for data loss or corruption as part of their shared responsibility terms. Cloud Services are also not immune to cyber-attacks or system failures. Therefore, having a cloud-to-cloud backup is still essential to adhere to the 3-2-1 methodology. As per Microsoft’s own Terms of Service (Service Availability, 6b) they state;
“We strive to keep the Services up and running; however, all online services suffer occasional disruptions and outages, and Microsoft is not liable for any disruption or loss you may suffer as a result. In the event of an outage, you may not be able to retrieve Your Content or Data that you’ve stored. We recommend that you regularly backup Your Content and Data that you store on the Services or store using Third-Party Apps and Services.”
Cloud-to-cloud backup solves this by making a live or regular duplication of data from one cloud service to another which is hosted on a separate platform. This ensures that if a problem occurs with one cloud provider, the data is still safe, accessible, and recoverable in another.
It is an essential part of the 3-2-1 backup strategy, providing:
Backup Security is Essential
While creating backups is essential, equally crucial is ensuring that these backups are protected from unauthorised access, corruption, or malicious attacks. As Cyber Security Evolves, attackers are beginning to target backup data as a method by which to steal data and wreak havoc on businesses. Employing robust encryption, access controls, and regular monitoring helps maintain the integrity of the backups. Without stringent security measures, such as encrypted immutable read/restore only backups, businesses could become an easy target for cyber criminals, potentially leading to data breaches or loss of sensitive information. In essence, backup security is not merely an optional layer of protection; it's an essential aspect of a comprehensive data management strategy, ensuring that the very safety nets designed to protect a business's data do not become vulnerabilities themselves.
How can TwentyFour help you ensure your Data is Backed Up?
In an era where data is more valuable than ever, both to businesses and to malicious threat actors, businesses cannot afford to take risks with their critical business data. The 3-2-1 backup strategy provides a robust and secure method of ensuring data integrity.
Investing in the 3-2-1 backup strategy isn't just about playing it safe; it is about ensuring business continuity, compliance, and the ongoing success of the business.
TwentyFour IT Services can work with your business to ensure that you have a comprehensive data backup solution in place. We can host your 3rd external backup in our remote, UK (United Kingdom) Based, Data Centre. With High Availability Redundancy, we monitor all backups for data integrity and are immediately alerted to any issues, ensuring that we can work to always keep a clean version of your business data available to you.
Contact us for an infrastructure and backup health check.