Technology is currently being used like never before, with the pandemic forcing people to work online and businesses to shut up shop, in favour of online stores and websites. Although we put our trust in our machines, because of their reliability on a daily basis, we should always be prepared for something to go wrong.

Let’s face it, s**t happens, just look at how 2020 went from starting as a great year to ending in a complete disaster. Technology is no different. Computers are not bulletproof, they can get hacked, they can be physically and digitally damaged, sometimes even without human intervention. One click of the wrong button or failure to install that update that’s been bugging you for weeks and all your data is gone, possibly for good. This is why you need a reliable backup solution.

Before I jump into that, I just wanted to tell you a story of why I wrote this post. Someone came to me to make a few changes to their website and look into a speed issue with it. Naturally, I made a copy or “backup” of the website to run on my own server for the purpose of investigating the speed issues. A few days later, during a migration from one hosting package to another, the web hosting provider made the fatal mistake of cancelling the existing package, without the approval of the website owner, deleting the website and taking it offline. While that hosting provider took their own fortnightly backups, this was not good enough, since many visual changes were made to the website after the last backup was made. Moreover, their support team did not respond to the ticket and left the website down for over 24 hours, despite them promising they would resolve the issue in an urgency. In the end, my “backup” was used to port the website over to a new hosting provider and the site was online again within 6 hours.

This is a prime example of why you should keep regular backups of anything digital. I would recommend you look into either a cloud storage solution such as Google Drive or Dropbox or purchasing your own removable storage like USB drives or NAS (Network Attached Storage) devices. This all depends on how much data you need to store and what the context of the data is, the latter solution being best suited for more sensitive data and business environments. NAS devices are brilliant, since many of them are reasonably priced and come with multiple drive bays, allowing multiple drives to mirror each other, in case one fails.

Saving everything to 1 computer’s hard drive or your smartphone is not a wise way to manage your data, let alone keeping it safe and secure.

I hope I’ve been able to convince you to have a think about the current way you store and manage your digital life. Don’t leave it until it’s too late!

Thanks for reading.