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Data protection tips for SMBs

With cyclones, floods and earthquakes affecting large parts of Australia and New Zealand over the past 18 months, Acronis suggests SMBs look to imaging, virtualisation and Cloud services to maintain continuity and customer service in the wake of a natural disaster.

With survey results showing just 22 percent of Australian businesses feel they’d be able to recover quickly in the event of a disaster, and 36 percent of local businesses reporting they don’t have a back-up and disaster recovery (DR) strategy in place, Acronis has the following five tips for SMBs to achieve the same data protection enjoyed by large organisations,

  1. Opt into disk imaging. To ensure your company can be up and running quickly after a disaster, make images of computers and servers so full copies of data and applications are safely tucked away. You can either store on different machines, in different locations or reach for a cloud solution. In the event that something happens, the images can be loaded onto to new hardware in hours rather than days.
  2. Jump to the cloud for business continuity. Onsite backups are great for day-to-day recovery, but if they are destroyed too, you need to consider an off-site data storage solution. An alternative is to contract with a cloud service provider to not only back up to the cloud but also recover onto virtual machines.
  3. Recover to dissimilar hardware. Hardware-agnostic software can recover from the backup image of the failed system onto any available hardware and replace the old machine’s hardware drivers with the new ones, a process that takes only about 15 minutes. Virtualisation users can opt to recover mission-critical machines even more quickly by recovering either a physical or virtual machine disk image to a standby virtual machine. It can then be launched immediately with a mouse click.
  4. Include both your physical and virtual environments. Use a backup and recovery solution that takes care of backups and recoveries of all your machines. For ease of management consider a solution that protects all the platforms you’re using. Then, if disaster strikes, your organisation can much more easily coordinate a recovery that will minimise or eliminate the potential for lost productivity.
  5. Make a plan and follow it. Make sure if disaster does strike, you know how to get your data back quickly. Look for data protection and disaster recovery solutions that provide a step by step guide to recover your systems and files. It is rare that the person who made the backup is the same person on hand to recover the system.

According to Acronis General Manager Karl Sice, any data loss, whether by natural disaster or human error, can lead to business failure.

“Our tips can help businesses, small and large, develop comprehensive backup and recovery plans that minimise the financial and productivity impacts that occur after unplanned disruptions,” he said.

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Lorna Brett

Lorna Brett

Lorna was Dynamic Business’ Social Web Editor in 2011/12. She’s a social media obsessed journalist, who has a passion for small business. Outside the 9 to 5, you’re likely to find her trawling the web for online bargains, perfecting her amateur photography skills or enjoying one too many cappucinos. You can follow her on <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/dynamicbusiness">Twitter @DynamicBusiness</a>

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