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Tips for Protecting and Managing Your Backup Media Assets

You may feel confident that your data is properly backed up. But do you know if it’s fully protected and can be recovered at a moment’s notice? Here are several tips for protecting and managing your backup media assets.

Prioritize Long Term Preservation

Routine data backup helps you recover lost information but it doesn’t offer 100% data protection. Imagine losing your data unexpectedly and desperately plugging a backup tape into a hard drive only to find out that your backup data is corrupted. If your media assets aren’t properly cared for, it’s possible for that to happen.

Storing a hard drive in a cardboard box in a humid room or accidentally dropping a tape on a hard floor can do just as much damage to your data as a flood or fire. In fact, there’s a range of hazards that can ruin your media assets over time:

  • Heat and humidity fluctuations
  • Dust and debris
  • Magnetic fields

When these threats are minimized, magnetic tapes can last several years. A professional computer media storage service offers professional care for and offsite climate-controlled storage of magnetic media assets. The facility is accessible only to screened, data protection professionals. Your media assets are stored in water/fire proof media storage cases on specialized racking systems. It’s a solution that ensures dependable, long-term preservation of your data.

Rotate Your Tapes

Never use one tape to protect all your data. You should always have multiple copies that offer a complete picture of new and archival data. At least one copy of your data should be stored offsite, so if a natural or man-made disaster occurs at your office, your information is protected in a safe, alternate location. A common tape rotation scheme uses six tapes representing full and incremental backup during a standard Monday through Friday business week. The right data protection partner can assess the volume of your backup data and recommend a tape rotation schedule tailored to your business.

Implement a Final Disposition Solution

Like outdated paper records, eventually your expired media assets need to be disposed of. As a result, you should have an information destruction solution that allows them to be destroyed confidentially. A media destruction service guarantees complete elimination of sensitive data from your media assets with the following process:

  • Degaussing: erasing data on media without Servo Tracks
  • Eradicating: erasing data on media with Servo Tracks
  • Delamination: separating data bearing material from the disc, thus destroying the magnetic field
  • Physical destruction: grinding the media into small particles

Regardless of whether your media asset inventory comprises tape cartridges, CDs, or portable thumb drives, after destruction you are provided with a “Certificate of Destruction” which serves as a verifiable record for legal and regulatory compliance purposes.

Protecting and managing your media assets should be a top priority in your corporate business continuity strategy.

Records Management Center provides businesses throughout Augusta, Evans, Thomson, and Martinez, GA, and Aiken, SC and the Central Savannah River Area with professional data protection solutions. To find out how we can help your business, please contact us by phone or complete the form on this page.