So you’ve implemented an excellent accounting software package, and are now reaping the benefits: time savings, efficiency, and extra revenue opportunities due to the insights you gain from your reports and dashboards. All is good…

…until the fire starts in your server room, and you discover that:

  • your daily backups haven’t always completed successfully
  • the weekly offsite backup tapes weren’t taken offsite last week
  • the previous week’s offsite tapes are stretched and won’t restore properly
  • all the other tapes were left on top of server, and have gone up in smoke

The good news: you can easily re-install the software. The bad news: your data for the last 4 weeks is gone – forever.

Sounds far-fetched? Hardly – the above scenario is a composite of two actual situations faced by customers over the past few years. It is for this reason that, in my opinion, all businesses should at least consider using an online backup service. No matter how good your in-house backup process may be, if you are backing up to on site media you are always vulnerable to human error (or omission), and to media failure.

The use of an appropriate online backup service removes these risks. At a minimum, a robust business-oriented online backup service will provide automated incremental backups of all your key data, once daily or more frequently, and will store redundant copies of your data in different physical locations. The data will ideally be double or triple encrypted to ensure that no-one but you can ever actually use it. And this will usually cost way less than you likely currently pay for insurance against data loss.

Not convinced? You’re not alone, and I’d be really interested to hear your reasoning. Please feel free to post a comment below.