How to protect yourself against data loss

Today we have the whole world in our pocket. Our friends, memories, money. We have access to everything at any time. All we need to do is to use our smartphone. Everything important to us that is immaterial we store on very much material devices.

Do you have this feeling sometimes that when it comes to computer related matters, everyone just assume that everything is obvious so there’s no need to explain anything? You know what I’m talking about? Those super obvious things that every one should know about but are ashamed to admit they don’t?

The darkest place is just under the lamp. We know our way through the most complicated things but totally forget about the basics. Therefore in this post i’ll explain in the simplest way possible, how you can secure your digital treasures.

What Are Digital Goods:

  • archival photos
  • important documents
  • projects (for example, your company logo)
  • everything you have digitized and you would cry your eyes out if you would loose it

The problem with digital goods is that we store them on physical devices. Things that can get lost, stolen or destroyed. I’m not talking about most recent documents or photos that you have in a cloud. I’m talking about scanned old photographs, pictures from childhood, stupid little novels, our memories before facebook ;)

I’m a designer. 95% of my work is digital. If a lightning would hit my computer and didn’t kill me in the same strike, I would loose almost everything I’ve done in past 10 years.

But hey! It is exactly what the backup copies are for, right? When was the last time you did yours? I’m fairly organized I do backup copies of my work at least once a month. I use pen drives and external hard drives. I bet you do the same. Do you store yours in an underground bunker or in a safe? I highly doubt that.

Thankfully you don’t need to look far to find some cool services that offer automatic online backup or cloud storage. This will not be a complete guide to online backuping services. I have no intention to put myself in the expert position in that matter. I will simply share my experience with services I personally know and use.

With free plan – Dropbox and Google drive

Anyone who have a gmail account have also access to 15gb Google Drive disk space. This storage space is shared between google drive and gmail. You can buy an additional disk space if you need to (check google pricing).

With free Dropbox plan you will get 2gb disk space which you can expand (here’s the pricing)

In both Dropbox and Google Drive you can create your own folders and upload files, the same way you use your personal hard drive. This solution works exceptionally well, when you have specific files that you want to keep safely backed up in the cloud. If you are worry about safety you can always zip them and use password protection.

Stress free $5 a month

I must admit that I sleep much better since I use Backblaze. Backblaze clones whole computer and all drives that are attached to it. This is an automatic backup that runs in the background. So you don’t even need to think about it. You can’t choose which files will get backed up, but you can exclude certain folders if you want to. You pay $5 per machine and the disk space is unlimited. It’s a great price for peace of mind.

The initial backup can take from 2 weeks to few months. Depending on the amount of files you actually have and how fast is your outgoing internet connection. After that, the backup is made in real time. Files deleted from our machine remain backed up for a month. On top of this Backblaze offer “find my computer” service in case it get stolen. This is a perfect solution for everyone who wants to sleep peacefully knowing their work is backed up and secured.

It doesn’t matter how, just do it

Everyone have own preferences when it comes to programs or platforms. Above options are those I personally use on daily basis. I’m sure you will be able to find many more if you will look a bit harder. The important part is not how, but when. Don’t wait until it’s too late.