CAI Managed IT Blog
Why Redundancy is EVERYTHING for Data Backups
With a business’ data being such a priority nowadays, protecting it against all circumstances needs to be appropriately attended to. One fundamental component of this protection is the implementation of a proper backup strategy. Let’s go over the most foundational element of a successful backup, and how we recommend businesses to accomplish it: redundancy.
Redundancy Isn’t Always a Bad Thing
First, we need to address the stigma around the concept of “redundancy” in general. While often associated with waste, redundancy effectively boils down to having more than you need to operate. As a result, redundancy can be seen as either good or bad depending on the circumstances.
For instance, having more supplies and equipment than you need (or can manage) isn’t good, as you likely have spent more than you needed to out of a finite budget, and might experience some challenges in storing these resources. Having excessive funds left in your budget means that you’re underutilizing what you have available. The list could go on and on, in terms of how redundancy could prove to be a detriment.
That being said, there are a few cases where redundancy can—quite literally—be the thing that keeps a business from going under. A redundant data backup is the prime example of this.
What a Redundant Data Backup Looks Like
All in all, a redundant data backup is one that involves multiple copies—just in case something happens to one, you have another copy waiting in the wings to step in.
Let’s consider a scenario, while tweaking a detail here and there to consider why a data backup is so important, particularly those designed to be redundant in nature:
In your business, you have…
- A. no means of backing up your data.
- B. a small backup device hosted onsite
- C. a cloud-based data backup
- D. both an onsite backup and one hosted in the cloud
As you go about your operations, you happen to be successfully targeted by ransomware via a clever phishing attack. In each of these scenarios, a different outcome is likely.
In Scenario A, your business is up the creek. Without any data backup, a successful ransomware infection is guaranteed to encrypt some—if not all—of your data, which is effectively the same as it being deleted. This is, of course, assuming you follow best practices and refrain from paying up, as this offers no guarantee that your data will be returned to you.
In Scenario B, there’s a good chance that your backup may be encrypted along with the data it is meant to be backing up. I hope I don’t have to go into detail about why this is a bad thing that should be avoided, especially when it effectively destroys your data, as happened in Scenario A.
In Scenario C, a cloud-based backup is one way to address the situation, as the encrypted data can simply be wiped and the backed-up data replicated back from the cloud.
Scenario D goes a little further, by both ensuring that your data is backed up in the cloud while also providing you with an on-site backup for quick and easy restoration if possible. Ideally, even the cloud provider storing your data has some redundancy in place, keeping your data in multiple locations to mitigate the impact any equipment failures on their end could cause.
This Redundancy is What Makes the 3-2-1 Rule
The 3-2-1 Rule is a concept that we often recommend to businesses, as it is a simple way to ensure that your data will be safe. It boils down to keeping (at least) three copies of your data, including the original, in two types of storage media, one of which being offsite and ideally in the cloud. This strategy is a great way to ensure your business has the access it needs to its essential data, regardless of the circumstances.
While CAI Managed IT can help you ensure that your backups are redundant. Not only will we help your business survive a data disaster, but we can also help you avoid them in the first place through our comprehensive managed services. To learn more about what we offer, explore the rest of our website and reach out to us at (800) 422-4782.