With cyber-crimes becoming more and more sophisticated, organizations all over the world are arming themselves with strict security measures. From beefing up network security, reviewing password protocols, training employees, and limiting access, the fight for data safety is complicated, time-consuming, and often costly.
Segregated backup is an integral part of a solid backup strategy. It can help prevent downtime, save money, avoid reputation problems, and more. Implementing it into your security plan can improve your chances of winning the battle against cybercriminals.
Let’s take a closer look at why you cannot ignore segregated backup and find out how it works.
Why You Need Segregated Backup
Segregated backups involve storing your data in more than one place. For example, if you keep the majority of your data on local in-office servers, you can back it up on:
- External hard drives
- USB sticks
- Cloud storage
- Network-attached storage (NAS)
If something happens to your internal computer and data disappears, you can quickly recover it from one of these backups. The point of such backup is to keep your data storage places separately. If one gets attacked, the others stay safe.
Here are a few incidents that can make you feel grateful for high-quality data backup:
Besides hurricanes, snowstorms, and wildfires, your office does not have protection from water pipe problems. If an old pipe burst in your office on Christmas, you may not get to the servers fast enough to salvage them.
It may be possible to recover the data. However, the time it would take could cause serious downtime. Besides dealing with a flooded office, you would have to face unexpected downtime expenses and unhappy clients.
Ransomware attacks account for 10% of all cybersecurity breaches. In the past year, their frequency doubled. If cybercriminals cut your access to the data and ask for ransom, you could be facing severe expenses. Even if you end up paying the ransom, criminals may not give you options for fast data recovery.
A good example is the 2021 Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack. When the company paid the ransom, cybercriminals provided a slow decryption program. It would take weeks for the organization to recover data and resume operations. They had backups.
If you face a ransomware attack, backup files can help you get back on your feet quickly and avoid paying the ransom.
No matter how well you train your employees, people make mistakes. The human factor is the crucial reason why cyberattacks are so successful. It’s also one of the reasons why you may lose your data in seconds. You risk losing your data if your employees:
- Unwittingly share the password or login data with a cybercriminal.
- Delete valuable information and files from the server or the cloud.
- Give access to an unauthorized party.
If any of the above issues occur, backup data can save the day and help you avoid downtime.
Backups and Cyber Liability Insurance
Since the chance of facing a cyber attack for a business of any size is high, many companies try to protect themselves against cyber risks. An effective cybersecurity plan can help minimize the risk of extra expenses and legal consequences. One of the ways to strengthen the program is to buy cyber liability insurance.
Cyber liability insurance covers your company’s liability for a sensitive data breach. Suppose your company handles sensitive information, such as SSNs, credit card numbers, driver’s license numbers, and medical records. In that case, a breach can lead to a severe loss of reputation and costly lawsuits.
Cyber liability insurance does not just handle legal expenses. It can also:
- Notify your customers about a breach
- Recover data
- Repair damaged computers and systems
Companies that provide this type of insurance are cautious about choosing clients. They are only willing to accept businesses with solid cybersecurity plans. Otherwise, they risk losing a substantial amount of money.
These insurers aim to avoid handling a cybersecurity breach, data loss, and associated expenses. That’s why they require their clients to implement solid security measures.
Creating high-quality backups is an integral part of a vigorous cybersecurity plan. Without them, your chances of getting approved for cyber liability insurance are low.
Segregated Backups: Best Practices
If you are ready to implement backups into your cybersecurity plan, here are several practices recommended by top cybersecurity companies.
Use at Least Three Backup Solutions
One backup solution is not enough to store your data safely. Consider using at least three storage options for your information, especially if some of it is sensitive.
The 3-2-1 rule of backup states that most organizations should have three copies of data. Two backups should be stored locally but on different media, and one should be in secure storage off-site.
Set Proper Backup Frequency
One reason Colonial Pipeline could not get back online quickly is that data backup frequency was insufficient. They lost days’ worth of data that took a while to recover. Set the right backup frequency to ensure you always have the most important data available.
Depending on your industry and business specifics, you may want to back up your data twice a day or more.
Keep Backups Encrypted
Encrypt all files and protect them with top cybersecurity measures. Your backups should have as much protection as your primary data storage solution. Otherwise, you could face an unexpected breach of the storage space.
Do not forget to perform backup tests at least once a year. Depending on your company’s needs, the testing can be more frequent.
Segregated backups are an essential part of a solid cybersecurity plan. Keeping your data in at least three separate places allows you to avoid the serious consequences of a cyberattack.
Besides being beneficial for your business operations, a robust backup strategy allows you to qualify for cyber liability insurance.