Tag Archives: backup
Maybe it depends what you do with your laptop. Personal documents can have huge sentimental value (what if you lost your baby photos?) but losing work documents could have a huge impact on your company’s bottom line – or maybe your bonus.
And what if you wrote one of the country’s most popular TV shows and last year’s National Book Awards Non-Fiction Book of the Year? Maybe the content on your laptop is potentially worth hundreds of thousands of pounds in revenues from scripts and books.
It’s that realisation that must have hit national treasure Miranda Hart when her laptop was stolen this month:
“If people who stole my laptop last night in W6 out there. Please please please return. Precious creative projects all lost. Will reward. RT.” Hart tweeted in a desperate attempt to retrieve the work that she lost along with her computer. And it appears that she’s still waiting for an answer.
How much is the data worth or even the reward? Recent research from Mozy found that, where a reward was offered, the average bounty for a lost or stolen item was over £275.
I really hope that Miranda gets her computer back – not least because I want to find out what this season’s laugh is modeled on (please let it be Katy Perry’s Roar). But our advice is to save the reward money and invest in the much more reliable and cost-effective use of online backup.
Businesses can protect their data from under £7 a month and home users from under £5. Check out Mozy for more details.
So, don’t ever put yourself through the heart-stopping, sinking feeling that your data may be gone forever, just get backup. Such fun!
Tritanium is the security methodology that Mozy has developed to help it earn the title of the world’s most trusted backup provider and hinges on three elements:
- Military-grade security with an encryption key that only you know and the military considers uncrackable
- World-class data centres that keep your cloud data locked up like Fort Knox
- A service that’s built to last, trusted by over six million people, 100,000 businesses and 800 giant corporations – and owned by one of the 250 biggest companies in the world
In a recent survey, Mozy asked 150 Dutch people what measures they believed needed to be in place in order to consider a cloud service safe.
Encrypting your files with a code that only you know at the cloud vendor site
Independent certification that the data centre is secure at the cloud vendor site
An alarm to protect against unauthorised access at the cloud vendor site
Protection systems for fire, floods and earthquakes at the cloud vendor site
Knowing that the doors and windows in the data centre are locked at the cloud vendor site
Dividing it up, and having copies stored in different areas at the cloud vendor site
A 24-hour guard and patrol dogs at the cloud vendor site
Eyeball scanner to secure door at the cloud vendor site
*Other (please specify)
Top demands included encryption, certification and threat detection. These – and 98 per cent of all other requirements are met with Mozy’s Tritanium-lined cloud.
With Mozy backup, a 12-digit key and 448 blowfish encryption, it would take, on average, 79 octillion (79,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000) guesses to break into a single packet of your data. A computer randomly generating one billion guesses a second would take 8.3 million years to crack the code.
Mozy is also certified by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) – the world’s largest developer of international standards – in the field of information security management systems.
And, of course, the data centres aren’t **just** fitted with intrusion alarms – they are staffed 24x7x365 by technical and security staff, with earthquake detection and biometric entry systems.
So, if you’ve been putting off backup for another day, waiting for a solution that you can really trust – trust Tritanium.
What about the man-hours cost though?
Gartner says that the average helpdesk call costs $20 in man-hours to resolve – which is about £13 to you and me. That might be for something as simple as a password reset or it could be trawling through backup data for a lost contract. But it’s an average so let’s work with it.
A typical Mozy user carrying out restores completes five each year. So, assuming that all end users have a similar need to restore, basic maths tells us that would equate to a £65 per user per year spend.
Sounds too simple? Sounds like a lot of restores?
That’s probably not surprising. The barriers in place to prevent workers from carrying out restores may well be bringing down the number that actually happen. Who really wants to contact their office IT support desk for help? Who really wants to fill out a support ticket? And who really wants to wait for their ticket to be processed and for their data to be retrieved? Sure, if your laptop dies and you need your whole backup set restored to your new computer, then it’s worth it. But, for one file though?
So, many people simply recreate the work that they’re trying to recover. And how much does that cost?
We’re going to have to resort to some averages again here. The average UK worker is paid around £25,000 a year. That works out at £12.82 an hour, however, when you take the costs of employment into account (National Insurance, office space, statutory leave, etc) experts say that the average per-hour cost of a worker is closer to £23.86.
Even if they only took an hour to recreate each piece of lost work, the cost of the five would-be restores is £119.30
29.7m people are currently in employment in the UK and experts say that 25% of those work in an office. So, if 7.43m people need five restores a year, £885.8m could be lost annually through recreating office documents or £482.62m spent processing restore requests through helpdesks.
What’s the solution? End-user empowerment. Simply giving workers the tools they need to resolve their own data loss issues can cut a huge slice out the cost of restores to your business.
With Mozy, users are able to simply navigate to the earlier location of their file in Windows Explorer and right click on the greyed-out name of any file (or older version of a file) that’s no longer available on their hard drives and restore it to their computers there and then. For many files, it won’t take longer than opening something that’s actually stored locally.
How much do restores cost your business? Why don’t you tell us in the comments below?
Are you one of those people? The kind who writes an email and scrupulously check and double check the addresses you’re sending it to, only to experience the dreadful sinking sensation that you’ve sent it to the person it’s about by accident. Even though you could swear that you’ve addressed it correctly, you can’t stop yourself from frantically clicking through to your sent items for validation.
What about making coffee in front of the boss? Are you convinced that your normally-steady hand will inexplicably turn into a quivering coffee-sprinkler, designed to spill as much of the brown stuff on as many people as possible. And does that mean you don’t do it?
It seems that nearly all of us have some irrational workplace fears that prevent us from doing things. If that means not having a cup of coffee, it’s probably not a big deal but, if prevents the implementation of a new project that could bring cost savings and time efficiencies, that’s a different matter.
Sounds extreme? 37 per cent of IT managers said that they’d had projects rejected because of managerial fears. And 55 per cent say that their company perceives the adoption of technology as a risk.
An ability to recognise risk is an essential business skill but automatically dismissing projects as risky, irrationally, means that companies can miss out.
IT managers surveyed, highlighted just how arbitrary decision making can be by revealing which buzzwords invoke an irrational fear from their bosses. If you’re pitching Mozy to your manager, should you call it “online backup”, “cloud backup”, “backup on demand” or “backup as a service”?
The answer is “backup on demand”! 53 per cent of IT managers say “on demand” helps their proposals compared with 15 per cent for “as a service.” Conversely, 17 per cent say “as a service” hinders their pitch compared to just 5 per cent for “on demand.”
Want to know more about the best and worst buzzwords to use if you want budget sign off? Or do you want to know how many people secretly think the photocopier is plotting against them? Then read the full findings of Mozy’s research here.
Deploying new technologies can give your business an edge over your competitors – but if you’ve never chosen a supplier in that market before, how do you know what’s right for you?
With each supplier promoting their benefits and aiming to convince you that their offering is the best, how do you differentiate between them when you don’t even know which questions to ask? And what’s more important: features or finances?
A new white paper by industry analysts IDC aims to help. Key Criteria in Selecting a Cloud Backup Provider Built to Last offers a checklist of criteria for business to use in their selection processes as well as an overview of industry trends and information.
“There has been an explosion in the number of vendors offering backup services and, while some of these have been designed to meet the needs of large businesses, others are designed with SMBs, consumers or individuals in mind,” said Laura DuBois, Program Vice President, Storage at IDC. “Enterprises that fail to dig beneath the surface with a given solution could find themselves risking their data in unsuitable environments or having the rug pulled out from under them by a provider that doesn’t stay the distance.”
The IDC White Paper’s hotlist of cloud backup “must haves” for enterprises includes:
- Financial stability
- Proven infrastructure
- Established enterprise customer base
- Geographically distributed data centers
- Third-party validation and accreditation
- SLA terms and execution
- Robust encryption
- Centralised management
And you can read the full checklist here: www.mozy.com/backup/idc-cloud-provider-key-criteria.
Compare it to some of the devices that you might have. An entry-level iPhone comes with 8GB of storage, meaning you’d need to network 128 of them together in order to store one terabyte of data. Or, to take it further, you’d need over 11.5 million iPhones to store the amount of data currently under Mozy’s management. That’s the entire population of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland (and another 1.5m people) buying an iPhone and joining their storage together.
Or compare it to the number of files that you could store using that much capacity. 90PB of storage would enable you to save the content of well over 8 trillion SMS text messages. Sending a million text messages per second (which is fast texting even for a teenager!) it would take nearly 100 years to fill the space.
But, in reality we really do send that number of messages. In the US alone, 2 trillion text messages are sent every year. Most are deleted almost immediately, of course, but many are saved and the amount of data that’s being generated keeps growing.
The best way to protect your growing stash of data is to find an automatic solution for backup, like Mozy, that systematically checks for new files on your computer that meet your backup criteria and copies them securely to the cloud.
Next time: More on securing big data
Yesterday, OFCOM revealed the results of the UK 4G auction. Putting the 2.3bn price tag and the impact on public borrowing aside, what does it mean for you and the way that you use your devices?
4G is driven by the need for speed. Upload and download speeds can potentially be ten times faster on 4G than they are on 3G. Of course, in reality, the speeds you receive may be lower than the 1Gbps that is nominally possible. Just as with high-speed broadband at home, the number of other users sharing the bandwidth available will impact the speeds you can achieve. However, as that’s the case with 3G too, you should expect to see some real benefits from an upgrade.
There’s still no unlimited data plan from EE in the UK but, with spectrum now in the hands of the other operators and services slated for launch before the summer, competition might lead to the introduction of uncapped plans. T-Mobile has recently launched an all-you-can-eat data plan in the USA to much fanfare and Three has a history of challenging the rest of the market with its unlimited plans – so we could be in store for uncapped data plans in the UK sooner rather than later.
But what does more data more quickly really mean for us folk? Is it all about video calls and online shopping?
Well, obviously, video calling would be a better experience on 4G than we have it today and retailers will be able to show you more of the products that you’re browsing. But the changes caused by 4G are much wider and it could have a more profound impact on the way we interact with our devices and what we expect from them.
What we expect from a device
Not so very long ago, devices were function-specific – and we had lots of them. Cameras were for taking pictures, phones were for making calls, MP3 players were for listening to music, games consoles were for playing games and so on. (Remember turning yourself into a pickpocket’s paradise when you went for a day out at the beach?) Fast forward to today, and our expectations are very different; we demand the ability to do all of those things on practically all of our devices.
Today, we split our devices by what could be loosely described as ‘use cases’. Our office laptops are for work so that’s where we write the majority of our emails and look at spreadsheets, our home desktop computers are for family use where we all store big files such as photos and projects. And our smartphones are for personal use.
Together, these behaviours cause two outcomes. Firstly, our devices require huge amounts of storage – a typical smartphone may have to carry not only three-dozen albums worth of pictures but an entire music collection, a week’s worth of emails, a library of books, films and games and all the software programmes required to use them. Secondly, it creates silos of information that you own but you can’t get to. For example, you have pictures on your phone, pictures on your laptop, pictures on a hard drive, pictures on an SD card – but they’re not the same pictures. And, just because you have a picture app on the device you’re using, it doesn’t mean that you can see the pictures of yours that you want to. Similarly, you have a device in your hand that could let you update the document that your boss wants urgently in the evening – but the document itself is only available on your computer in your office.
4G and the device
The speed and availability offered by 4G means that downloading or streaming information to your mobile device from your own ‘locker service’ on the internet nearly as quickly as you can get it from a drive on the device itself is one step closer to becoming a reality. And doing that at a reasonable cost to boot!
If that were the case, we’d see a fundamental shift in what we expect from our devices. Storing data on the device itself would become much less important. Who would need to spend £639 on a 128GB iPad when you could use a 16GB Apple tablet and simply download or stream the rest of your data to the device as and when you needed it?
We’d also see a decline in tying our devices to use cases. If you combine the lack of need for storage with the growing trend for Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies in the work place, it becomes increasingly conceivable that, in the future, we have one smartphone-sized device used on the move that we can also dock at work to use as a computer or at home to use as a tablet. Wherever we were and whatever we were trying to do, we’d simply download or stream the appropriate files that we needed from the internet.
A single device is further off but, with 4G, we’d be a lot closer to a world where we have one laptop, one tablet and one smartphone that we use to connect wirelessly to different virtualised environments. The same device could let you log into a virtual work desktop during the day and a personal desktop in the evening.
Virtualised desktops are already making strides in office environments, thanks to technology from companies like VMware – and personal cloud services are making the concept of doing the same thing at home more of a reality.
Tomorrow’s technology today
It’s going to take time for the impact of 4G to be fully realised, so how can we see some of the benefits sooner?
To start with, let’s be pragmatic. When services launch later this year, they’re not going to be ubiquitous. Large parts of the UK don’t even get a decent mobile signal for voice calling so it would be crazy to expect to be able to download your files everywhere.
But we can start to think differently about what data we want to physically carry with us, and what we only need access to. Many services that are available today to help you share files between your devices are designed for a pre-4G world where data is copied to every device and stored many times over.
This incurs a substantial up-front cost. For example, if you’re buying into iCloud, there’s not only the cost of the service but all the additional storage you need on your devices to cope with everything being copied everywhere. A £240 saving from a low-storage iPad to a high-storage iPad buys a lot of mobile connectivity so that you can stream the data that you haven’t synced as and when you need it.
If you’re in the market for a new tablet or a new cloud service at the moment, a little thought now about what sort of service you want, combined with which devices could save you a great deal of money, both now and in the future.
A little bit of sync a little bit of access
Perhaps a better plan is to get a clearer understanding of what you know you want to use on your device and what you might want to use. Marking key folders, documents and playlists for syncronisation to all your devices – or dropping them into a ‘magic sync folder’ – will ensure that you always have the latest thing you’re working on or the songs you love wherever you are on whatever device, even if you haven’t got a single bar of signal.
Automatically copying the rest of your files to the cloud means that you can get at everything else if you find that you need it. This dual approach of having some data ‘on device’ and some data ‘on demand’ is a smart way of getting the best of both worlds – especially in the early days of 4G.
4G – The game changer
There’s still some skepticism about the impact of 4G. WAP was going to change the world, then 3G, now 4G… But it’s easy to forget just how far we’ve come from the days when the only thing you could do on your phone was play Snake. Mobile data and ADSL together have transformed where and how we work and had a major impact on how we shop, entertain ourselves, meet our spouses, choose where we live, and decide what to eat and what to wear. 4G is closest we’ve come to bringing the benefits of these two technologies together and we shouldn’t underestimate the potential of where that could take us.
The daffodils outside the Mozy UK office are in full flower today, bathing in glorious sunshine amongst the other spring bulbs. But, if the Daily Express is to be believed, we have snow in store before the week is out. And, even the more moderate weather forecast from the BBC says that it may turn cold in the next few days.
So, perhaps, nature has sadly been a bit too hasty this week in delivering a host of golden flowers. Winter isn’t quite done with us yet!
But, this is often the way of things – all the signs point to something being over and done with and then, all of a sudden, it transpires that it’s really not.
It’s the same in our business and personal lives: just as we decide we no longer need something and throw it out, we discover that it’s suddenly relevant or, worse still, critically important.
“That email’s not of interest to me.” “That project is long gone.” “That file’s taking up loads of space and I’m never going to need it again.” There are all manner of reasons for deleting things at the time… It’s just, sometimes, it’s only a matter of days (or hours!) before you realise that you want it back.
That’s where online backup from Mozy comes into its own. If you discover that you need a file and you don’t have it any more, Mozy can help. Even if you delete a file, Mozy will still keep a copy of it for you for a minimum of 30 days. Or, if you save over it, you can roll back to an earlier version.
So, the daffs outside the Mozy office might have poked their heads above the parapet too soon – and there’s nothing really that Mozy can do about it if the frosts come back – but, if you’ve got trigger happy with the delete button, Mozy’s here to help.
Now, where did I put those gloves? I should never have packed them away this early…