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How to Prevent Data Loss Due to Natural Calamities According to the European Environmental Agency, the heatwave in 2003 led to a loss of EUR 15 Billion.

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A searing heatwave burned through Europe earlier this summer. One of those scorching days, while traveling from Gottingen to Witzenhausen, we witnessed a forest fire. Moments later, our external hard disk constituting of documents and all other important data stopped working. The technician informed that it was due to overheating and it's difficult to retrieve the complete data.

We lost our passwords, balance sheets, documents, credentials, codes, etc. Gartner states at several companies, 50 percent of the helpdesk calls are for password resets. Using the same password everywhere is not a secure practice and remembering all unique passwords is difficult. There are services wherein you have to change your passwords every month which makes it hard for us to remember variable passwords each time.

How can Entrepreneurs prevent such loss of data due to natural calamities?

What are digital assets?

Digital assets can be anything:

  • Business social media accounts, official emails, messenger services like slack, file sharing services, etc

  • Business account online banking credentials, transaction passwords, stocks, etc

  • Sensitive employer data, customer data, email list, client information, stats on growth, profits, assets, etc

  • Website admin access. apps, domains, content, design, landing pages, online stores or any business entity with digital assets

  • Digital subscriptions to various services like invoices, customer support, tools, analytics software, payment gateway, etc

Intellectual property like patents, product designs, working process, trademarks equity, shares certificate, etc. In a few cases, digital intellectual designs or structures can be copied.

How can businesses avoid a data loss nightmare?

Technology that can replace traditional backups:

Forty to 60 percent of small businesses never reopen after disasters according to FEMA and nine out of 10 small business will close within a year if they don't resume operations within five days of a natural disaster (reasons: data loss, communication failure, etc). It isn't the question about recovering your data, indeed how fast you can. The following technology will do just that for you.

During data loss, restoring all of the data requires the latest backup. Incremental backups delay recovery time and having too may incremental backups increases time and probability of data loss. After resuming work, how fast you can start working while recovering data matters rather than having a fast backup system. Hence recovery time should be optimized rather than backup. CDP technology: Instead of backing up huge data files all at once, CDP works on a block by block basis where it backs up continuously 24 hours a day. The software monitors the data for any modifications applied and backs it up. The index takes responsibility for tracking and making sure only the changes are backed up.

Cost effective alternative for remote backup:

Remote backup can be expensive for small businesses so a lot of them only have onsite backups.Onsite backup set up cost can range from 27 k € initially based on timeline and storage capacity of archive files. It is less expensive for small and medium businesses but just an onsite backup will make them vulnerable to overheating or hurricane, the data center gets affected along with your data Inevitably resulting in data loss and costing the business money. Nightmare, isn't it? by regularly collecting tapes and guarding them in a fireproof temperature controlled location a lot of costs can be cut down.

List and store in a secure location:

According to McCafe, 47 percent of confidential data is uploaded on the cloud. Make a list of digital accounts you have access to along with their credentials.

  • Use fire and tamper-proof vaults and briefcases to store the credentials of your digital assets if you are storing it on a paper
  • Store your hard drives in a dry, temperature controlled environment with multiple backups at various locations



Surya Prakash Singh and Sparsha Mallipeddi co-founded YOWILL.LIFE, a company dedicated to protecting and transferring the digital and personal legacy of loved ones.
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