10 Most Common Data Backup Mistakes To Avoid

Backing up data is an important function of any organization because an office cannot function effectively without the use of data. An office is thus regarded as the brain of every organization because it encompasses all the important data that every department needs to function effectively

Since every organization needs data to function, the need for backing up data can not be over-emphasized. However, people are accustomed to making errors and mistakes while backing up data.
It is essential to identify the common mistakes people make while backing up data and to also know how to avoid them completely.

10 Most Common Data Backup Mistakes To Avoid

The following are common data backup mistakes people make, and how you can avoid them aptly:

  1. Absence of online backup plans
  2. Lack of storage space on the backup system
  3. Absence of external backup plans
  4. Absence of mobile backup plans
  5. Absence of a secured cloud-based system
  6. Backing up the wrong data or file
  7. Absence of automated storage features
  8. Absence of an organized data system
  9. Lack of verification of saved data
  10. Absence of a recovery plan for backed-up data.

Absent of online backup plans

Most people are accustomed to carrying out daily activities without making plans for backing up data. Since we understand that data constitutes an integral part of every organization and that organizations often rely on data to function, it is important to always have a backup plan in case of an unforeseen circumstance or disaster

For example, I used to work at a Microfinance firm as a documentation specialist, and the director of operations in our organization relied solely on data sent to his computer system for review without having a backup plan. His PC once experienced a Trojan attack where he was forced to wipe off every data on his computer including all work-related documents.

The news about the loss of data did not sit well with management, as he received a query and was hereby demoted for being incompetent.

The above example highlights the importance of backing up data because the chief of operations officer cannot function effectively with data loss in sight, and he won’t be able to give a detailed report to the upper management when prompted.

Saving your files on your personal computer is not enough, because you never know when your PC will be attacked by a virus or when an unforeseen circumstance may occur. You must employ the use of a cloud back-ups system such as Google cloud, Google one or Apple cloud. You can always access your backed-up information on the cloud and may choose to copy, write or download them when needed.

Lack of storage space on the backup system

This is most common when using a physical storage device such as a flash drive or a CD-ROM. Because an external storage device has a limited memory capacity, you’ll be at risk of losing your data or not having them saved correctly when you fail to ensure the memory capacity. You are most likely to encounter errors such as having your data partially saved, or not having them saved at all while you can ascertain that you’ve backed up your data.
Utilizing an online storage system such as Google Drive or iCloud helps you break storage boundaries, and you can save as many files as you want…

Absence of external backup plans

Understandably, a PC is not enough to serve as a backup plan. Office personnel are expected to be proactive and must have other means of backing up data.

For example, a flash drive is a perfect example of an external backup device, and the great thing about flash drives is that they are portable and they come in various forms of memory capacity. Should in case an unforeseen circumstance occur or you’re to travel without your PC, you can always rely on the data on your flash drive while you input it on any available computer to retrieve data.

Absence of mobile backup plans

Our mobile phones can also play a major role when the need for backup arises. Smartphones in 2023 are so advanced with up to 250GB storage capacity making it a mode of backup for important files.

A person may choose to save any important files on his smartphone, and you can always forget your PC but your mobile phone will always be on you when needed.

In addition, backing up data on your smartphone makes it easy for you to travel light, and you may not necessarily need to rely on an internet connection before retrieving your backed-up files.

Absence of a secured cloud-based system

What differentiates the physical storage system from the digital storage system is that physical storage systems are vulnerable to unforeseen circumstances such as theft, virus attack, damage, etc.

However, failure to secure data on your cloud may result in data loss or data breach. It is important to use a strong password on any of your cloud drives and to restrict the access of data to a few trustworthy persons.

Backing up the wrong data or file

This is most common when backing up your files or data manually. What this implies is that you’re manually going to select the type of data you want to be backed up on an alternate storage device.
Because we are imperfect humans and are prone to mistakes, it’s best to employ the use of an automated storage system where all your data will be backed up on the go. If you however choose the manual method of backing up your file, you have to ensure you carefully select your preferred data correctly in order to prevent data loss, or backing up the less important data.

Absence of automated storage features

An office can always integrate the use of automated storage processes. This is a better and improved way of backing up your data as compared to the manual process. For example, WhatsApp allows users to choose when they want to back up their data, and the type of data they want to be backed up, while telegram uses an automatic storage system.
Integrating an automated storage system at your workplace saves you from data loss or data manipulation from employees.

Absence of an organized data system

One of the common errors people make while backing up data is that they often fail to organize the data appropriately. For example, if you’re backing up data to the cloud, some people fail to separate each file from the other and end up storing all the files in the same destination.

Lack of organizing makes it harder to source saved data when needed. It is important to be careful when using either digital or physical modes of storing data for the faster result while sorting.

Lack of verification of saved data:

Some people often make the mistake of not verifying their backed-up data to ensure that they saved the right file. Meanwhile, some people are accustomed to deleting the original copy of their backed-up data in order to save space without verifying if their data was properly saved.

Errors such as errors of omission may occur due to several factors, and it’s oftentimes to best to confirm if your data are perfectly saved, and organized on your diverse storage system before you think of wiping off the original copy. In addition, it’s also recommended to verify your backed-up data in case of an unforeseen circumstance that may lead to the loss of your original copy.

Absence of a recovery plan for backed-up data

Since we understand that backed-up data can be tampered with when it’s not well secured, or they may not be properly saved to your desired taste. It is often recommended to have a recovery plan for your backed-up data.

For example, if you are the type who chooses to back up your data on a cloud drive such as Google cloud or iCloud, you take an extra measure of having the important data on a flash drive or CD-ROM for ease of access when needed. This will keep you safe whenever you experience a data breach or loss of data.

In conclusion, backing up data serves as a form of reliability and helps lessen the risk involved when you experience data loss, theft, or damage to your PC. People often make 10 common mistakes when backing up data or having duplicate data for reference purposes, and such errors can be avoided if you are careful enough to select the right backup method, and to create an additional backup system to ease data recovery.

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