Data. There's no escaping it in this day and age, as even the least tech savvy of us have sensitive data stored digitally, from bank details to our health records.
Of course, this type of information is hosted by businesses in highly secure data centres and should therefore be all but impenetrable. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for personal data storage, which remains substandard at best.
Research into personal data storage has found that although more people backup their data, a shocking 65 per cent of people who lost data last year actually had a solution in place. Clearly, there are lessons which need to be learned - and fast.
Cloud computing is now responsible for the vast majority of consumer technology - without it you can forget about catching up on the latest episodes of your favourite TV shows on Netflix or booking tickets on the move. However, behind the scenes data centres are the unsung heroes of consumer tech ensuring everything keeps ticking over.
High quality data centres have systems in place to ensure back-up structures automatically kick in when an outage occurs so any services relying on this data don't suffer any downtime. With the vast range of connections and structures which combine within data centres, providers are continuously asking "what will happen if this element fails?" to ensure consumers can continue checking their emails on remote devices or streaming films online without interruption. Of course, although consumers aren't able to utilise data centres to protect their personal data, it's vital they look at the examples set by the industry to ensure they aren't at risk of losing irreplaceable data, such as priceless family photos or a completed dissertation ready for submission.
Is my data at risk?
It may seem pessimistic, but to truly secure your data it's vital to continuously ask what would happen if something fails within your backup process. Too many people simply backup their data on their laptop's hard drive. Simply put this is quite naïve - what happens if your laptop breaks or is stolen? All of your data is gone.
One solution many consumers turn to is the use of external hard drives. Although this reduces the risk of complete data loss, if your hardware was stolen or damaged then again, your data would be gone. Another step must be taken to ensure your data is safe and sound.
The data centre industry doesn't accept assumptions regarding data protection and neither should you. Backing up your data in the cloud, alongside the more traditional methods will all but guarantee your data is safe, as even if your hardware is damaged of lost the data you hold so dear will remain safely locked away in the cloud, accessible from any device with an internet connection.
As data becomes increasingly digitalised, protecting your online documents is vital and looking at the methods used by data centres to ensure businesses don't suffer data loss should be your first port of call.