This is a question that every computer user, business owner, agency head or organization president should be asking. The amount of data stored on computers and servers increases every year, often by as much as eighty percent. Files on computer and server drives have replaced reams of paper documents stored in file cabinets.

According to one source, hard drive failures, either logical or physical, cause crashes at the rate of 140,000 per week in the United States. Additionally, power surges and drastic weather conditions destroy computer equipment and cause data loss. Critical data and important documents take time to re-create, if they can be re-created at all. Inaccessible data causes costly downtime for any business or venture. Therefore, an effective backup plan is essential to prevent disruption of business or operations.

A local, onsite server-based backup is a logical, responsible choice. A duplicate copy of the files on every PC is stored in a central, easily accessed location. However, the main drawback is that the server is subject to the same conditions as the computers it backs up. Furthermore, the cost of the equipment is often high and deploying the server backup could take days or weeks to accomplish. There are maintenance costs as well.

Other local backup options include burning files to CDs or DVDs, saving to a secondary internal hard drive, or backing up to an external hard drive. Disk backups become cumbersome; internal drives are subject to system failures. Newer external drives hold several terabytes of data. Nevertheless, they are susceptible to the same power, weather, and disaster conditions as the PC to which they are connected.

Another backup option, often used in conjunction with local backups, is online storage and backup. AccuTech International, a trusted leader in online backup solutions, provides online backup solutions that are affordable and secure and that will work seamlessly with your current data protection plan. After the initial backup, the program runs quietly in the background, providing you with protection and peace of mind your business deserves.