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Protect your business against computer hardware failures

September 21, 2015

Editor’s Note: In this week’s guest blog, security expert Robert Siciliano explains how to protect your IT systems and your business from hardware failure. To learn more, download our new e-book, “5 Things Small Businesses Need to Know about Disaster Recovery.”

It is September and that means National Preparedness Month: an ideal time to get involved in your community’s safety. Make plans to stay safe, and this includes keeping ongoing communications alive. National Preparedness Month culminates September 30th with National PrepareAthon! Day.

I can’t believe that people who heavily rely on a computer for business will still suddenly report to clients, “My computer crashed; can you resend me all the files?” What? Wait!

Why aren’t these people backing up their data on a frequent basis? If your computer is central to your business you should back up your data a minimum of once a day to protect against the following threats:

  • Computer hack
  • Unintentional deletion
  • Theft
  • Water or fire damage
  • Hard drive crash

To make daily data backups less daunting, carefully sift through all of your files to rid old, useless ones and organize still-needed ones. A mess of files with a common theme all over the desktop can be consolidated into a single folder.

Protecting your data begins with keeping your computer in a safe, secure, locked location, but this is only the first (and weakest) layer of protection. The next step is to automatically back up data to the cloud. The third layer is to use local backups, ideally use sync software that offers routine backups to multiple local drives. It’s also important to use antimalware security software to prevent attacks from hackers.

Additional tips for small businesses
Make de-cluttering a priority by deleting unnecessary digital files. This will help the computer run faster and help your daily backups run more quickly. Take some time to sift through your programs and delete the useless ones.

It’s also a good idea to clean up your disk regularly. Windows users can find the disk cleanup tool by going to the Performance Information and Tools section under the Control Panel.

Go to the control panel and hit “Hardware and Sound.” Then click “Power Options.” Choosing the recommended “balanced” power setting will benefit the hard drive.

Every two to three years, reinstall your operating system to keep your hard drive feeling like a spring chicken.

The prevention tactics above apply to businesses and really, everyone. Employees should be rigorously trained on proactive security and tricks that cyber thieves use. To learn more about preparing your small business against the common accidents of everyday life, download Carbonite’s e-book, “5 Things Small Businesses Need to Know about Disaster Recovery.”

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  • Tech tips