Do You Have a Backup Plan? Data Recovery Essentials for Businesses in 2024

Any business can lose data anytime. Fortunately, data loss is not irreversible if you can overturn the unfortunate event and get back on your feet using data recovery tools.

How do you recover from a data-loss event? What fundamental truths and facts should guide you in your data recovery? Well, you don’t need to kill yourself with big terms to do this because we compiled the most important ones to kickstart your recovery efforts. To minimize the loss and follow a well-designed disaster recovery (DR) plan, many businesses adopt the seven-layer model of disaster response outlined below.

  • Step 1. Conduct a business impact analysis.
  • Step 2. Perform a rigorous risk assessment.
  • Step 3. Develop several recovery strategies.
  • Step 4. Update or develop a backup policy.
  • Step 5. Update or develop a recovery plan.
  • Step 6. Test, test, test.
  • Step 7. Maintain and update the disaster recovery plan regularly.

The plan is provisional, and most businesses are creative in adapting it to their personal needs and business realities. Here are the data recovery essentials to help you succeed in your data backup and recovery endeavors.

Business Risk Assessment

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Assess your risk levels if you want to succeed in your data recovery because there can be no recovery without a loss. Additionally, there can be no losses without real threats. So, assess the potential risks your business faces to be better positioned for putting appropriate data backup and recovery measures in place.

When analyzing your risks, factor in the following:

● Your core business processes that the threats could hamper and how to regain them after disaster strikes;

● The most destructive risks to your regular business flow and operations;

● Prioritization of the recovery process.

Confirm the Loss Before Initiating a Recovery

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It’s prudent to confirm you have actually lost your data before initiating a recovery process. If your data was on your computer, check your recycle bin first because the data could have been deleted accidentally. In this case, you could still find them there if you check it promptly.

If you check the trash bin and find the needed files there, restore it to its original folder. But if your search shows the data is missing, initiate a recovery process immediately. Don’t assume or rush; instead, confirm the facts first.

Have a Contingency Plan

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Everyone loses data at some point – in different ways and at various levels. To minimize or avert the damage, create a contingency plan for your data. Document this plan to cover issues surrounding hardware, software, and network failure. Your plan should explain the nature of the expected outage. It should also spell out the processes and procedures that will follow to get you back operational after the disruption.

Where necessary, your plan needs to detail the standby hardware or software you will use when the current one fails. Don’t forget to review this plan and update it to cope with the changing circumstances and technology.

Optimize Data Recovery Tools and Software

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Data recovery tools and software are essential to your recovery plans and efforts. These tools can recover most lost files if you know their locations and how to search for them. You could recover them if they were not deleted using secure deletion tools. Moreover, such solutions can track and recover files that have been emptied from your computer’s trash bin. However, this recovery is only possible if new data haven’t overwritten the emptied files.

Keep in mind that recovery using these tools, especially free ones, can be challenging. The reason is that the process is tiring, and it requires a certain level of IT knowledge and experience. Use this recovery option if you know what you are doing and have the time to do so.

Tune Your Backup and Recovery Tools

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Tuning of backup and recovery solutions you’re using is vital for the smooth I/O performance, shared memory, message queues, and network performance. The key to successful tuning is to realize what resources are used in the backup/recovery operations and how they are applied. For instance, by default, the function of a backup tool is to receive data from a client and to move that data to tape or any other backup medium. What you can tune here is the size of the data buffers the app will use in the process of storing the backed-up information. The performance of your software will improve if the app’s write buffers match the drive cache and represent the function of the cache.

Ask for Professional Help When Necessary

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If the above DIY recovery option fails, don’t worry as you can always resort to professional help. Some data recovery levels need expert intervention because trying to handle them alone could worsen matters. For example, if a pot of tea spills on a hard drive or a flash disk containing costly pictures breaks, you need expert help for sure.

Besides, you can prepare for a disaster by planning who will respond to the emergency in your company and what functions they will perform. For instance, a DR plan should always include an emergency-on-call group, the front-line staff responding to a disaster and executing the plan. Second, you should assign specific staff members to a management team – the group of persons responsible for the DR plan’s management. The recovery team should also be specified in that plan; these are people who will undertake the actual recovery process involving the restoration of data from backup media, the revival of the physical infrastructure and facilities, etc. These roles should be fixed and understood by the assigned staff before the disaster strikes.

Understand That Human Systems Still Fail

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Overall, get ready for some inconveniences before you fully recover your data even when you do everything right. All human systems can fail, and none is 100% perfect. Even the best recovery provider can have downtime that could temporarily inconvenience you.

Data loss is not a final because you can recover data if you know how to do it. We hope you will utilize the information provided here to consolidate your data recovery efforts. The ball is in your court to act today.