Don’t be an April Fool. Backup your tools.

The world is changing at an exponential rate these days and now more than ever it’s important to remember to back up your work. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to chastise my loved ones when I find out they don’t have a backup of their phone or tablet. I cringe when I go to help them with their system updates only to find the last backup they have is from 580 days ago (according to Time Machine). So, today’s public service announcement is brought to you by the letter “B” for Backup. 

March 31 is dubbed “World Backup Day” and it serves as a reminder for people the world over to back up their files, mobile devices, and all other forms of data. A few years ago, the only way to backup your computer was to plug in a portable hard drive and copy files onto it. Now, there are many, many more options out there including single external drives, network-attached storage (NAS), and even Cloud-based Storage. Some of the more popular cloud-based options are:

Services like Backblaze provide an option to complete full off-site backups of your files and systems. Off-site backups are a great idea because that means no matter what happens to your physical device, the data is protected. The process of maintaining an off-site backup like Backblaze has become a lot more user-friendly in recent years and I do recommend it. Another option for off-site backups is to use a NAS device (like Drobo, Synology, and QNAP), but keep it at a friend’s house. You can then access it as a personal cloud backup and your data can be uploaded securely. 

Even though World Backup Day is really about making sure you have a second copy of your data saved somewhere other than your primary computer hard drive, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention how to retrieve lost data. If you find yourself in a position where you have lost your data, in some cases, you can utilize services like DriveSavers to recover files from hard drives. That said, you really want that to be the last resort option because shipping your hard drive out to a company in the hopes that they are able to recover the data from your dead drive is an intense, stressful process.

Over the years, tons of data have been lost. Whether it be a student’s term paper, a financial report from a business, or a once-in-a-lifetime memory of a beloved family member — data need to be backed up. With storage costs at an all-time low and software options more widely available, there is no reason why everyone shouldn’t make a backup of their precious data on March 31. With the world going completely digital within a matter of weeks, backup really is a must these days. So, take a few minutes today to figure out what option works best for you and make a backup.

For more details, visit WorldBackUpDay, Facebook, and Twitter.