Why data recovery is essential for small business owners
In the data recovery industry, we always hear stories of small businesses losing their data and completely derailing the way they operate their business.
Think about it, how many business owners and employees turn up to work, log on to their computer and access their data? Even just being able to check your emails can be at risk if your server meets with disaster.
That probably means you can’t read or respond to emails, sales inquiries or even access contact lists.
From builders, to bakers, to brokers, the one thing these businesses have in common is that they can’t risk losing their data. Whether it’s building plans, recipes and supplier lists, or mortgage quotes, even one day without that data can mean a huge loss for your business.
“Quite often our data recovery team will receive a frantic call from a business owner whose server has gone down and they’ve been left dead in the water. Often their backup hasn’t been performed in months, and now they’ve lost the valuable files and data they need to run their their day-to-day operations. It’s moments like these that business owners realise the true value of their data and files.”
– Nicolas Thomas, Operations, Computer Forensics NZ
Losing your data is easier than you think
A lot of the time, small business owners don’t realise how easy it is to lose their data. Data loss isn’t always the result of an earthquake and flooded office.
More often, the everyday mistakes and unfortunate situations are the ones that lead to data loss. From spilling hot coffee on your laptop, to receiving a computer virus. Even a power outage or surge can affect your system.
“We frequently see small businesses using their reception computer as a server. This is dangerous because there are so many chances that this computer will be compromised, especially if it’s being used daily and by multiple people. We always recommend having a dedicated server.”
– Nicolas Thomas, Operations, Computer Forensics NZ
4 reasons why your business data is so important
When data is lost, every part of the business can be affected.
Sales teams have lost contact details and can’t even look up pricing for quotes. Accounting records are gone, and important templates or project documents can’t be accessed.
Business owners and employees are left sitting around, unable to do the most basic tasks to run their daily operations.
With the value of data in mind, it’s important to know the true extent that your business relies on computer files and data, such as:
- Accounting and tax records
- Key contact lists
- Sales documents
- Emails, such as orders, product inquiries, project updates and contacts
- Intellectual property (IP) such as proprietary product designs
1. A missed lead is a missed opportunity
Losing your data can have a major impact on your business and revenue.
If a server goes down and you haven’t backed it up, then you’ve probably lost key contacts, IP, and sales communications. Sales teams can’t follow up on leads or even generate new sales.
That makes data recovery crucial for past, present and future sales and revenue.
2. Don’t risk downtime
According to a US study, 9 out of 10 companies that experience a week of data centre downtime go out of business within a year.
Without being able to access your business files, documents and client information, there’s not a lot of work that you and your employees can do.
That’s why it’s crucial to recover your data as soon as possible.
3. Protect your customers
Losing your data not only damages your business, but your customers’ as well.
Losing sensitive customer data through malware or theft damages not only your customer relationships, but your business reputation as well.
4. Files that are invaluable to your business
Data loss doesn’t always mean losing customers and leads. A lot of small business keep their valuable marketing materials, like images, logos, videos on servers.
Losing valuable material in which your business has invested valuable time and money can be financially damaging and set your business back.
3 things you can do now to protect your business data
1. Back it up
The key to a good backup is redundancy (number of copies), reliability, and simplicity.
We always recommend that you go with a backup system that best suits your needs whilst maintaining control over what is happening. Using two or more USB drives, with one being kept onsite and another offsite is a fairly simple and efficient way to do that.
The danger of relying on a complicated, automatic system is that if something goes wrong you can be blissfully unaware that your backups are not happening. We recommend that regular checks are carried out to ensure they are being successfully completed. It’s always beneficial to discuss with your IT provider what best will suit your needs.
2. Keep it secure
Did you know 43% of all cyber attacks specifically target small businesses?
Having secure and reliable computer security software is key to protecting your business. While there’s a lot of antivirus software out there, the general rule of thumb is that you get what you pay for.
Some of the free offerings are adequate on the protection front but can come bundled with adware and annoying “tools” that can be a pain.
As before, your IT provider or someone who is intimately familiar with your operation should be able to provide more advice as to what will best suit your needs.
3. Call an expert
If your computer or server fails, it doesn’t always mean all is lost.
Your business data is invaluable, so it’s important not to risk damaging it further by trying to fix the situation yourself or seeking the assistance of IT technicians who are not qualified data recovery analysts. Often, you will make it worse and certainly risk permanently losing or corrupting your data.
The best thing to do is to call an established data recovery expert straight away.
Our team at Computer Forensics NZ are experts when it comes to data recovery. Specialising in all types of data recovery throughout New Zealand, Australia, and the South Pacific since 1999 and are here to assist in recovering your valuable data.
If you have any questions about data recovery or need to recover lost files, give us a call on 0800 LOST FILES anytime.