Backup

Backup means "reinforcement, protection" and means a backup copy in IT. For companies, backups of their computers, servers and especially the stored contents are very important, because in the case of data loss or damage, current backups allow the fastest possible return to normal operation.

What does the term “backup” mean in detail?

It's not likely, but possible: computers, hard drives, servers, or the entire system can become unusable for a variety of reasons, such as through

  • Technical hardware defects
  • Malware such as worms or ransomware
  • Force majeure (lightning strikes, natural disasters such as floods, a fire in the building, water damage in the building, etc.)

Using a backup, you can recover lost, destroyed, deleted or encrypted data and, if necessary, rebuild the entire system. The more up-to-date your backups, the faster and smoother you can resume operations after such an interruption.

There are different ways to create backups. Any is better than none. It is recommended to combine several:

  • Automated backups stored on the computer
  • Backups stored on external devices, such as, an external hard disk or on a server
  • Backups stored in other network areas
  • Backups stored in a corporate cloud
  • Backups stored in an external cloud

"Bootable Backups" are backups that allow you to continue working as normal. They contain not only your data, but, for example, the programs and settings of the computer on which you have been working.

Important: Make sure that at least one, and even better, two backups are kept separate from your system and offline. Especially in the case of targeted ransomware attacks on companies, cyber criminals focus on encrypting as many system components as possible.

  • If a backup is connected to the system, it will also be encrypted and unusable for you.
  • If the backup is, for example, on an external hard drive that is currently not connected, it remains unencrypted and usable.

Where do I encounter backups in my daily work?

It may not even affect you, for example, when company backups are created automatically and/or after hours. After a loss of data, you might encounter the issue of backup, for example, when your administrator reboots your computer and restores your data via backup. If you do not know how backups are handled in your company, ask!

What can I do to improve my safety?

If you do not create any sporadic backups, create one now. Make it as easy as possible in this step:

  • Use the backup programs provided for your computer
    • Create a “system image" in Windows
    • "TimeMachine" under macOS
  • Save the backup to an external hard disk.
  • After backing up, disconnect the external hard drive from your computer and keep it in a safe place.
    • You probably need administrator rights to do this.

If you do not have administrator rights: Copy all the data that you can save by copying. You can also use an external hard drive or a USB stick here. Disconnect the hard disk or stick after copying from your computer.

Optimize and diversify your backup strategy. Think about what data, settings, systems, etc. are critical to your business, which ones are important, which ones you want, and so on. These considerations allow you to prioritize and plan your backups.

Back up your backups using at least two different methods. Keep in mind:

  • Only a backup that is kept offline and kept separate from your system will not get infected even with a targeted ransomware attack.
  • Data stored in another location will also be retained in the event of a disaster at your business location, such as a fire. These options include: external hard drives or servers located elsewhere, external clouds

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