In the tech world, things are always changing. Technology and the rules we apply to that technology are in a constant flux. There are some rules, however, that are timeless because they still make A LOT of sense! In a recent discussion with our friends at G-Tech, they reminded us of one of the most important “basics” of surviving in today’s technical jungle: The 3-2-1 backup rule. The 3-2-1 backup rule implies that you should:
3. Have at least 3 copies of your data
2. Keep these backups on 2 different media
1. Store 1 backup offsite
Backing up is easier than ever, and despite the 3-2-1 backup rule’s simplicity, many people continue to ignore it and lose their data because they were unprepared. Following the 3-2-1 backup rule is easy! Here’s how it works:
3. Have At Least 3 Copies Of Your Data
Two isn't enough if it's important. You should have at least three copies, meaning your original data and at least two backups. It’s obvious that the more copies of your data you make, the less risk you have of losing everything. If you have only one additional copy of your data, AT LEAST make sure it’s located in a different physical location from the original (more on this later)
2. Keep These Backups On 2 Different Media
Having several backups of your data and keeping them on the same type of storage is NOT logical. Why? Because if you buy two hard drives at the same time, and same model, chances are they will fail around the same time. For example, disks from the same RAID are statistically dependent, and often, after one disk failure, you might experience the failure of another disk from the same storage in a short period. That’s why the 3-2-1 rule suggests that you keep copies of your data on at least two different storage types. Mix and match to have the best statistical chance of keeping your data safe, one internal hard disk copy, one on a removable storage device (external hard drives, USB drives, SD-cards, CDs, DVDs) and one in the cloud.
1. Store 1 Backup Offsite
Picture this, your home or studio gets broken into. The first things the thief grabs is your computer and the external hard drive sitting right next to it. That back up isn't going to do you any good now! That's why you should always have one offsite backup, and offsite means as FAR AWAY as possible. This is much easier now than ever, with so many options for cloud storage. Your data is safe then, even if there is a break-in, fire or national disaster.