The ninth annual World Backup Day is almost here — a March 31 “holiday” established by Youngstown State University student Ismail Jadun in 2011 to encourage computer users to back up their data and files.
Backup is one of those activities that is frequently discussed, fretted over, but not done nearly as regularly as it should be. Too often, it's not even done correctly. It’s easy to treat World Backup Day like a one-and-done reminder, but MSPs with small to midsize business (SMB) clients need to make data protection an ongoing conversation, ensuring each customer has a reliable BDR solution in place.March 31 is World Backup Day, a reminder to computer users around the world to backup their data, wherever it resides. Click To Tweet
The first step in that process is making sure that customers understand the need for data protection. With the rise in ransomware and other types of attacks, every business (even smaller ones) needs a documented back up and data recovery plan that is built on a managed data protection service. For MSPs, having a full-featured remote backup solution in place makes it easier, faster, and more cost efficient to support those clients, deploy the solution, and recover data when there is a problem.
When you are discussing backup with your customers, make sure you emphasize the cost of data loss and the time (and labor costs) it takes to rebuild servers and computers from scratch. Educate clients about the value of offsite, cloud-based solutions. This is not only a marketing opportunity, but it’s also a way to reduce your support headaches down the road when one of your clients’ employees inadvertently falls for a phishing scam and gets everybody locked out of the server in a ransomware attack.
The price of BDR is always going to be a lot less than the cost of data loss or a ransomware attack. There are also many more options available now for storing data outside the four walls of a customer’s office. It's easier to back up data, store it, and retrieve it than it was in the past, making cost and convenience objections moot.While data protection is important year round, MSPs should use World Backup Day as an opportunity to remind customers about the importance of disaster recovery (DR) and ensure clients have a robust recovery plan in place. Click To Tweet
Test your recovery capabilities regularly
Besides making sure your clients are backing up their data both on-premises and offsite, ensure they have a viable recovery plan in place, and that appropriate staff members know what that plan is. It's also crucial that backups occur regularly — preferably daily. The OS and applications should be part of the backup process as well, and remote user data should be included.
Testing is critical. It’s the only way to validate your ability to restore from a backup. A complete disaster recovery test should be conducted at least once a year, but it's better if it happens quarterly or monthly. By testing, you can confirm that the data you need is viable and that if something goes wrong, it can be remedied quickly.
While data protection is important year round, MSPs should use World Backup Day as an opportunity to remind customers about the importance of disaster recovery (DR) and ensure clients have a robust recovery plan in place. Once you've backed up their data – and your own — make sure that you have the tools and resources in place to make backups more frequent, automated, and reliable across your customer base. After all, there isn’t a better time to evaluate your current offering and better protect your customers than right now.
Chris Crellin is Senior Director of Product Management for Barracuda MSP, a provider of security and data protection solutions for managed services providers, where he is responsible for leading product strategy and management. Connect with him on LinkedIn here.