Working from home sure is a rollercoaster of emotions. Monday morning in tracky dacks – huge win! IT security breach Monday afternoon – not so much. 

Here’s the good news! We’re here to help you work through any security issues. Because with the right tech and plans in place, we can get through this together! Here are four key points to ensure your business is secure. 

Worst-case scenarios 

Deep breaths… Let’s go through some doomsday tech scenarios here…  

From equipment failures and cyberattacks to extreme weather and power outages, unpredictable events can put your organisation’s operations at risk. Sadly, some of these risks are now more relevant than ever before.  

As we shift to working from home, we’re not the only ones working harder than ever – our home Internet is at it too. Since February, there’s been a 70 to 80 percent increase in demand during daytime hours which means the risk of outages is at an all-time high. 

Then there’s a chance of hard drive crashes, stolen computers, or even malware hijacks… basically, there are heaps of ways to lose your data. During COVID-19, attackers are preying on the vulnerable and stealing their data through COVID-themed apps, protective mask sale scams and more – which means briefing staff about security measures during this time should be first on your to-do list. Basically, we’re saying what everyone’s thinking – prevention is better than cure.  

Better safe than sorry 

As with all kinds of disasters… recovery planning is key to getting up and running again.  

Think of disaster recovery planning like insurance…you don’t need it until you do. A good recovery plan includes a solid strategy for your IT systems with a business continuity and backup strategy. 

Business continuity planning is centred on keeping things running while a disaster occurs. An effective business continuity plan is essential from a compliance requirements perspective to protecting the reputation of your business… pretty important stuff! 

Luckily, business continuity plans come in all shapes and sizes, meaning you can get protected whatever the size of your business or budget. 

Got a spare? 

You’d never go on a long drive without a spare tyre, right? So why would you embark on a hard day’s work without a backup?  

Internet outages kill productivity. So protect your workforce with a secondary form of Internet service as a backup for your primary connection. That way, critical business functions will be available to customers, suppliers and regulators at all times. We can all agree – the less downtime, the better.  

A Backup Strategy in four steps 

Of course, preventing Internet outages alone isn’t enough. A resilient IT system includes a data backup system. A data backup system’s job is to regularly create backups in the cloud or on media in a secure, off-site location. Check out these four nifty steps to create a dependable backup strategy, including two geeky buzzwords to impress your CIO. 

1. What data has to be backed up?  

Your first answer will probably be “everything”. And that’s okay, but here’s what’s most important to consider. Your organisation’s Recovery Time Objective (RTO)… which is the maximum acceptable length of time required to recover lost data and get back up and running. The more data you try to recover, the longer it’ll take so backup what’s most important. 

2. How often do you need to backup your data? 

Here’s another fun buzzword for you - Recovery Point Objective (RPO). The RPO describes a period of time in which an enterprise’s operations must be restored aligned with the frequency with which you backup your data. As a good rule of thumb, backups should be performed at least once every 24 hours to meet acceptable standards of most organisations. 

3. What is the most suitable backup and recovery solution?  

We all need a little backup sometimes, right? The question is… what kind of backup? Based on your organisation’s needs, identify a suitable solution as a part of your backup strategy. Types of backup include: 

  • A full backup: A back up of literally everything. This takes the longest. 
  • Differential backups: Only additions and changes are copied. 
  • Incremental backups: These backup only the data that has changed since the last backup.  

Next, you have to decide whether you go for a cloud-based backup solution or a physical backup. 

4. How to test your backup system? 

Once your backup system is in place, test it. Don’t just spot test a couple of files. Make sure you can restore entire directories, servers, or applications. If the backup solution supports end-user backup – inform and educate your colleagues about using it. Finally, remember to monitor your backup performance and regularly check the logs for data lapses. 

What’s next? 

Grab a coffee and put on a clean pair of trackies. Then think about your business’ critical data and what needs to be backed up and where you might store it. Spirit offers you a complimentary IT risk audit to help you understand what applications don’t work in the cloud, what backups you already have or don’t have, and if your data is recoverable. One of our IT security experts will happily chat you through your options for safer and more secure (stress-free) IT systems at your workplace. 

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