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Backup and Security

What happens when you use the cloud to store files encrypted for security instead of backing them up properly? You can face huge expenses, compounded by the consequences of lost data.

Let’s set a scene to show you how things can play out.

When your files are backed up or stored, they can be encrypted. That’s not a bad thing because it can add a layer of security, and it can help your cloud provider make better use of their server space. However, you and anyone who works on your IT system must make sure that all your system software stays intact.

We had a situation with a client that shows how multiple missteps can create exponential problems. The first misstep was that Windows updates had not been installed. We can’t emphasize enough how important it is to install updates, which include security measures and bug fixes. Without the bug fixes, you’ll run into a problem somewhere along the line that causes a performance failure.

The client decided to call in another IT person to fix the problem that arose with their system. During the diagnostic process, that tech erroneously removed a vital part of the system software, which included the encryption key for stored files. The net result was that the data files could not be restored when they thought the problem was fixed.

Fortunately, the client still had their old computer, which had been sitting in the office for a year. It wasn’t ideal, but it helped. Because they had Office 365, they were able to restore their Word and PowerPoint files, but they lost their QuickBooks files and a year’s worth of data because there was no effective backup in place for the files. They had to be recreated – painstakingly – at the cost of time and money.

We see three lessons for everyone based on our client’s experience:

  1. Install your updates. While security updates are top-of-mind for most users because of prevalent hacking, you can’t overlook the bug fixes. Bugs will cause performance problems that you’ll recognize and motivate you to take corrective action, which brings us to the next point.
  2. Use IT consultants who know what they’re doing. Cheaping out on a service provider compounds the effects of not keeping your software up to date. Today’s tech systems are complex, and your IT tech must know where to go and where not to go within your system. When someone uninstalls software, for example, they must have the encryption key to restore software.
  3. Have a good backup program in place. Cheaping out here, too, can have dire consequences. Again, we go back to Azure and Office 365. Together, they store and encrypt your files on secure servers. And because they’re in the cloud, you can access your files from any device that has internet access. Ultimately, that means you should be able to recover your data in the event of a catastrophic event.

We can help you with any technology issues, including system wellness checks, setting up a process for updating your software, and installing and setting up Office 365 with an Azure backup program. Call us – 973-433-6676 – or email us to discuss your needs and their solutions.