Deciding to back up your data is the first step to ensuring that your important photos, documents and files are protected against loss or damage.
How you approach backing up that data can increase that protection.
At Geek Squad, we recommend you follow the “3-2-1 backup strategy.” That is, we want you to make sure your data is protected by having at least three copies in two different formats, with one of those copies off site.
When we talk about 3 different copies, we mean three totally different devices. It may feel like you’re being safe by having another copy of a file in a different folder on the same hard drive, but should that drive fail, you’ve lost all of those files. So in addition to the original file on your computer, keep at least two copies on other, separate devices, such as another computer, an external hard drive or online backup service.
You’ll also want to have those copies on at least two different formats. So, if you’re backing up files to burned CDs or DVDs, you’ll also want to use an external USB hard drive. Or if you’re already using an external drive, backing up to an online service. This helps prevent a problem that might corrupt one format from killing all of your data.
1 off-site copy
Finally, it’s important to keep one copy off site. This prevents fire, flood or theft from affecting all the copies of your important data in your house or place of business. There are plenty of online options to choose from. Depending on the amount of data you have, there are even some free options, as well as paid cloud-based services with extra features and storage.
You can also check out our Drives and Storage Buying Guide on BestBuy.com.