The Saving Grace Of Offsite Data Backup

    June 7, 2006

In the words of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, “Precaution is better than cure.” In a situation involving the loss of data, where a “cure” may be impossible, this phrase becomes even more true. Many businesses have taken this aphorism to heart, and are careful to back up their data. And perhaps just as importantly – they’re backing it up offsite.

This was just another lesson learned in the last hurricane season, when many companies suffered hurtful or even crippling damage. In addition to the destruction of their buildings and offices, much of their data – dutifully backed up, but stored on site – was lost. Disasters can strike any business, though, whether it’s in a hurricane zone or not. Offsite data backup can become a saving grace.

“Data is everything now. Protecting your data is the same as protecting your business,” said Mark Martin, CEO of NetMass, a data backup and storage company. “Even losing a few e-mails can carry a heavy price in terms of lost opportunity.”

Although it’s only natural for someone in the business of backup to recommend the practice, Martin has facts to back up his claims. “Gartner has found that 40 percent of organizations that experience a disaster go out of business within two years,” he reported.

A key component of data backup is recovery time. “Some people can say, I can live with data backup every five minutes,’ but if that’s a stock trade, you can’t lose a nanosecond of data. On e-commerce sites, every second you’re down, customers are going somewhere else,” said David Palermo, VP of marketing for Sungard Availability Services.

Cost used to be the main deterrent to data backup, but that factor is fading. “Now, the two primary capital expenses associated with data backup – capacity and bandwidth – have become much cheaper,” Martin said. “There is no longer a reason for any company, no matter how small, to not have remote backup.”

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Doug is a staff writer for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest eBusiness news.