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by admin last modified Aug 14, 2017 11:21 PM
Thoughts on August's OUCH! on Backup & Restore
Marcus Aureilus put it well - "Think not so much of what thou hast not as of what thou hast: but of the things which thou hast, select the best, and then reflect how eagerly they would have been sought, if thou hadst them not."
Assessing what's important extends well beyond backup. As the tangible parts of our lives become increasingly digital we archive what's valuable. The following article is about making that archive last. —Ned Schumann 

SANS OUCH! for August: Backup & Recovery
Overview
If you use a computer or mobile device long enough, sooner or later something will go wrong, resulting in you losing your personal files, documents, or photos. For example, you may accidently delete the wrong files, have a hardware failure, lose a device, or become infected with malware, such as ransomware. At times like these, backups are often the only way you can rebuild your digital life. In this newsletter, we explain what backups are, how to back up your data, and how to develop a simple strategy that’s right for you.

Backups: What, When, and How
Backups are copies of your information stored somewhere other than on your computer or mobile device. When you lose valuable data, you can recover that data from your backups. Unfortunately, too many people fail to perform regular backups, even though they are simple and inexpensive. The first step is deciding what you want to back up. There are two approaches: (1) backing up specific data that is important to you; or (2) backing up everything, including your entire operating system. Many backup solutions are configured by default to use the first approach. They back up data from the most commonly used folders. In many cases, this is all you need. However, if you are not sure what to back up or want to be extra careful, back up everything.

Second, you must decide how frequently to back up. Built-in backup programs, such as Apple’s Time Machine or Microsoft Windows Backup and Restore, allow you to create an automatic, “set it and forget it” backup schedule. Common options include hourly, daily, weekly, etc. Other solutions offer “continuous protection,” in which new or altered files back up immediately each time you save a document. At a minimum, we recommend automated daily backups.

Finally, you need to decide how you are going to back up. There are two ways to back up your data: physical media or Cloud-based storage. Each approach has advantages and disadvantages. If you are not sure which approach to use, you can use both at the same time. Physical media is devices you control, such as external USB drives or Wi-Fi accessible network devices. The advantage of using your own physical media is it enables you to back up and recover large amounts of data very quickly. The disadvantage of such an approach is if you become infected with malware, such as ransomware, it is possible for the infection to spread to your backups. Also, if you have a disaster, such as fire or theft, it can result in you losing not only your computer, but the backups as well. As such, if you use external devices for backups, you should store a copy of your backup off-site in a secure location. Make sure backups you store off-site are properly labeled.

Video of the Month
Every month, SANS posts a short, fun security awareness video that covers how you and your family can stay safe and secure online. Learn the latest simple tricks to making the most of the Internet. https://securingthehuman.sans.org/votm