When’s the last time you’ve done a backup of your important business files?
C’mon, be honest here …
Probably never and for those that have its most likely been some weeks (or months).
So then what happens if your computer dies? What if your computer was stolen? What if you were the victim of a malicious virus attack that wiped out all files? Where would your business be then?
Doing a backup, locally, is nice but then again … what happens if something happened to your home or office? What if there was a burglary? You’d be in the same situation.
That’s why it’s important to do off-site backups that way even if something does happen you still have access to these important, valuable files that aren’t going to be affected locally.
The good thing is that now you’re thinking about doing a backup. The second good thing is that there are plenty of free online backup services you can use to get the job done. Here are ones I’d recommend.
Dropbox is an online backup/sync service that you have heard about, no doubt. Dropbox is amazing because it’s a free service which places a folder on your desktop which can then be synced to the Dropbox servers. You can then log into your account and access these files from within their system or download the client onto another computer and sync the files.
Overall Dropbox is a preferred choice for online storage and doing minor backups. The service is very stable and the more people you refer the higher the amount of storage you gain, for free. The paid options are well worth the money but if you had to decide on just one online storage option (and you haven’t tried one before) then give Dropbox a go.
- Accessible through multiple devices
- 256-bit AES encryption and two-step verification
- 2GB starting storage (but more with referrals)
Box is becoming a major player in the online storage market. Some of the great draws for Box is the ability to share large files to others, embedding files onto a site, syncing files, and online collaboration tools like commenting and real-time updates.
Overall Box.com is a great contender for those that want more from Dropbox (and the others). The free options is ideal for those that need to make simple backups or the ability to easily share files with friends, family, coworkers, and clients. The paid options (if you do so wish to subscribe) give you better, inexpensive options compared to many other online storage services which makes Box very attractive for individuals and businesses.
- 10GB of free online storage
- Sync file with just about any type of device
- Great UI and usability
3. Google Drive
Google Drive comes part of having a Google account which makes it extremely accessible. I’m including this one because of its flexibility. It doesn’t really seem like it’s meant for storage but you can use it that way when you create a .zip or .rar file and upload it to your Drive account.
Overall Drive is good for keeping backups of your articles, presentations, videos, and other business-related documents. Personally, I use it to archive my writing and some of my project files because it’s always nice to have access to them wherever I need to log into my Google account.
- 15GB of free storage (extra when paid)
- Sync files and access them from your Google account
- Collaboration options via Drive applications (docs, sheets, slides, etc)
Now a word to the wise …
If you look in the terms and conditions for most of these online backup services then you’re going to see that these companies essentially have access to your information. This means you should refrain from putting anything too sensitive in their storage. For that sensitive data it would probably be best you do a local backup (via USB or CD) and then have a trusted family member hold it for safe keeping.
What are you waiting for? You never know when something could happen so take an hour of your day, today, and make that backup. Then start doing it at least once a week. It’s better safe than sorry.