Internet Web Storage Service.
Busy entrepreneurs may have little time to consider what would happen if their hard drives crashed, but this is a nightmare worth some thought. Face the facts: Systems crash, and, furthermore, as hard drives have grown to 1GB and bigger, fewer users are regularly backing up their drives.
But what would happen if you lost payroll records, customer lists or receivable accounts? Reconstructing this data means laboriously inputting all the information by hand--if you have current printouts.
Two top-notch backup services on the Web offer a solution. Go to McAfee's Personal Vault (http://www.mcafee.com), a service that allows users to store up to 30MB in cyberspace for $9.95 a month--and do so with the confidence that McAfee is a premier provider of antivirus software. What good will 30 megs do you when you've got a massive hard drive? Plenty--as long as you use the space for storing only the data files you need to keep your business operating, no matter what disaster strikes your office.
To upload into the Personal Vault, McAfee recommends using its WebStor software ($65), which allows you to back up selected files at predetermined times and promises high compatibility with Personal Vault.
But McAfee's not alone in meeting this need for critical backups. A competitor is DataSafe (http://www.datasafe.com), which offers a $14.95-per-month backup service that gives you 15MB of storage space and throws in the software that daily (or on another schedule of your choosing) scans your hard drive, identifies files that have been altered since the last backup, and even handles the backing up in an unattended mode if you wish.