Backing up your data is a crucial part of running a successful business. If you don't back up your data, you put your small- and medium-sized business (SMB) at risk of losing valuable information that may never be recovered.
There are many different ways to back up your data, and in this article, we'll discuss the advantages and disadvantages of four types: hardware backups, software backups, cloud-based backups, and hybrid backups.
Hardware backups, also known as local or offline backups, are a longstanding form of data backup. They involve copying your data from your computer's hard drive to an external storage device, such as a USB flash drive or an external hard drive.
Hardware backups are reliable and relatively easy to use, but they can be expensive if you need to buy multiple devices to back up all of your data. In addition, you may have to purchase software that allows your computer to recognize and interact with the external drive.
Hardware backups are ideal for SMBs with limited storage space, such as those in a home office setting, or those with not much data to back up. Since hardware backups are typically not connected to a network or the internet, they are secure from cyberattacks, ransomware attacks, and other online threats.
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Software backups, also known as image-based or disk-level backups, involve making a copy of your entire computer's hard drive. This can be done either by using software that comes with your computer or by purchasing backup software from a third party.
Software backups are easy to use and typically don't require any additional hardware, but they can be expensive and are not ideal for SMBs with limited storage space. In addition, they can be time-consuming to restore if you need to use them.
Software backups are ideal for SMBs with a lot of data to back up and those that want an easy way to restore their entire computer’s data in the event of a crash or other disaster.
Cloud-based backups are a convenient way to back up data without having to worry about software and hardware requirements. All you need is an internet connection and a cloud-based backup service.
Cloud-based backups are typically less expensive than other forms of backup, and they offer the added convenience of being accessible from anywhere in the world. However, they are not as secure as hardware or software backups, and they can be slow if you have a lot of data to back up.
Cloud-based backups are ideal for SMBs that want an easy, affordable way to back up their data and that don't have a lot of IT resources.
Related reading: Things to look for when choosing a data backup service
A hybrid backup combines multiple techniques in order to give you the best possible protection for your SMB's important information. This type of backup can involve using both cloud- and hardware-based solutions, or it can use a combination of software and hardware backups.
Hybrid backups are the most expensive type of backup, but they offer the best protection against data loss. They are also the most time-consuming to set up and maintain.
Hybrid backups are ideal for SMBs that want the best possible protection for their data and that are willing to invest in a comprehensive backup solution.
Which is best for your SMB?
The best type of backup for your SMB depends on a variety of factors, including the amount of data you have to back up, your budget, and your IT resources. It's important that you evaluate your needs before making a decision.
If you're not sure which type of backup is right for you, consult with one of our experts today. They can help you choose the solution that will work best for your SMB as well as provide assistance with your other IT needs.