CONTRIBUTED CONTENT — In our increasingly digital world, where precious memories, important documents and vital information are stored on electronic devices, the importance of data backup cannot be overstated.

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Whether it’s flood, fire, theft or accidental damage, disaster can strike your devices at any time. The “Internet People” at InfoWest want to help you prepare by backing up essential data ahead of time, keeping your files safe even if you need to replace your phone or computer.

“The main thing is just to do it,” InfoWest marketing manager Thomas Dyches said. “Anything that’s important, you need to have at least another copy that you can access.”

World Backup Day, celebrated annually on March 31, serves as a timely reminder for individuals and businesses alike to take proactive steps in securing their digital assets. In honor of this occasion, here are four essential tips for backing up your digital life.

Automate regular backups

The key to ensuring comprehensive data protection is establishing a regular and automated backup routine. Utilize built-in backup features on your devices or invest in reputable backup software to streamline the process.

Automated backups guarantee that your files are consistently safeguarded, reducing the risk of data loss due to human error or unforeseen circumstances.

Diversify backup locations

Relying on a single backup location can be risky; a localized issue, such as hardware failure or theft, could compromise all your data. To mitigate this risk, diversify your backup locations.

Consider using external hard drives, cloud services and network-attached storage devices. Cloud services like Google Drive, Dropbox or iCloud provide convenient and secure offsite storage, ensuring your data is accessible even if a physical disaster occurs.

Prioritize critical data

Not all data holds the same level of importance, so it’s essential to prioritize what you back up. Identify critical files, such as financial records, irreplaceable photos and essential documents, and ensure they receive regular and thorough backups.

This approach not only saves storage space but also streamlines the recovery process in the event of data loss. Some backup solutions allow you to create customized backup sets, making it easy to focus on specific types of data.

Test your backups

Performing routine tests on your backups is often overlooked, but it’s a crucial step in ensuring the reliability of your backup system. Schedule regular restoration tests to confirm that your backup files are intact and can be successfully recovered.

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Additionally, keep an eye on any error messages or anomalies during the backup process so you can address issues promptly. Regular testing provides peace of mind and guarantees that your backup strategy is effective when you need it most.

“If you’re just getting started, backing up doesn’t have to be complicated,” Dyches said. “The first thing I’d recommend is getting an external hard drive that you just plug into your computer and copy files onto. They’re simple, affordable and anyone can do it.”

World Backup Day serves as a valuable reminder to prioritize the security of our digital lives. By implementing these four tips – automating regular backups, diversifying backup locations, prioritizing critical data and testing backups – you can significantly enhance your data protection strategy.

Embracing these practices not only safeguards your valuable information but also ensures a swift recovery in the face of unexpected data loss. Take the pledge this World Backup Day to protect your digital world and enjoy peace of mind knowing that your data is secure and accessible.

Learn more about InfoWest’s products, services and community outreach on their website.

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