Data Backup Part 2: The 3-2-1 Rule

Today we are continuing the series of articles on building an effective data backup strategy.  The last article addressed the shocking facts of how many people still don’t backup their computers, as well as the high costs of data recovery from a defective drive.  We also introduced a data backup concept called the 3-2-1 rule.  As a reminder this means that you should:

  • Have at least three copies of your data.
  • Store the copies on two different forms of media.
  • Keep one backup copy offsite.

Let’s take a look at the 3-2-1 rule a little closer.  Basically it’s all about redundancy.  The 3-2-1 rule is really meant to make sure that your data (pictures, movies, etc.) is stored in multiple ways so if a catastrophic event occurs at least one of your backups will survive and you can get your data (memories) back.

Have at Least 3 Copies of Your Data
The first copy is actually the data on your computer itself.  The other two copies should be in a backup format, one on external media and one securely offsite.

Store the Copies on Two Different Forms of Media
You have many options for storing copies of your data including:

  • External hard drive
  • CD’s/DVD’s
  • Flash Drives
  • Network Attached Storage Drives

Keep One Backup Copy Offsite
Whether you take a copy with you stored on removable media or subscribe to a backup service, it is extremely important to have one copy off site in case of fire, flood, theft, or natural disaster.

The next article will take a closer look at the pros and cons of the different types of media you can store your data on, as well as offsite storage options including subscription services.

Posted in: Data Backup.
Last Modified: January 27, 2017