6 Best Practices for Data Backup in the Finance Industry

man looking at data and charts on a laptop in a suit

The finance industry deals with important confidential data every day. Whether you’re a bank, an investment firm or a credit card company, the amount of sensitive information you manage day in, day out is staggering. This is why it’s especially critical for those in the finance industry to be well-prepared in case of disaster, like system outages or data breaches, by implementing best practices for data backup.

In this blog, we’ll delve into why data backup is paramount, and outline six best practices for data backup in the finance industry.

[Related: IT Procurement for Healthcare: Where To Start]

Why Is Data Backup Important for the Finance Industry?

If a system outage or data breach occurs, your finance business could be at risk of losing significant revenue and facing a vast variety of legal penalties and fines. 

And these events happen more often than you may think. 

Financial service providers are the second most-targeted type of business by cybercriminals. Their data can be extremely vulnerable without the right protection and recovery plans — especially now, as more and more people go online to conduct financial activities. 

However, one of the worst aftereffects of data breaches is arguably the loss of trust between you and your customers. 

Even if a breach doesn’t directly affect them, once a customer realizes your business isn’t implementing a robust data backup strategy alongside best cybersecurity practices to follow up from an attack, retaining them as customers will be a struggle.

Losing months’ or even years’ worth of research, intellectual property, employee data and customer account information could cause your finance company irreparable damage.

computer with data and man speaking on the phone in the back

Six Best Practices for Data Backup

It doesn’t have to be as overwhelming as it sounds. Follow these guidelines to create a robust data backup strategy or modify your current one to remain in good standing.

1. Follow the 3-2-1 Rule

When it comes to data backup in the finance industry, it’s best practice to follow something called the “3-2-1 rule.” Basically, the rule calls for keeping three copies of data on two different storage types. Then, you store at least one copy at an off-site location. 

A financial company working with a managed IT services provider like CMIT Solutions can back up its data off-site in the cloud or in another software-as-a-service virtual location. Additionally, storing information in the cloud can make it easier to automate updates and backups that this partner facilitates. No need for you to worry about backup infrastructure.

[Related: Client Data Protection Checklist for Accountants]

2. Document Backup Policies and Procedures and Have a Plan

Establishing a business continuity and disaster recovery plan in case things go awry is critical and vital for your data backup strategy. This helps staff across the board know how to identify and respond to data loss and maintain normal operations as much as possible. 

Here are a few key steps:

  • Assign roles and responsibilities for who does what in case of data loss.
  • Research how various types of breaches could affect your business.
  • Design a recovery plan with feedback from everyone involved.

Additionally, ensure your company properly documents and shares these steps, then reviews them regularly.

3. Keep Backups Encrypted

Encrypting (or “coding”) your backup files is an additional step your financial company can take to keep your data secure. This step prevents unauthorized access because any stolen files — including backup files — are in an unreadable format without the decryption key.

[Related: IT Support To Benefit Your Business]

4. Back Up Data Frequently and Perform Regular Tests

One very important best practices for data backup is performing these backups regularly. Periodic backups, such as nightly or weekly, can give you confidence that you’ll still be up to date in the event of data loss.

5. Automate Your Backups

Automated backups require very little human interaction for backing up and storing network and system data. However, you or an IT provider should always perform regular maintenance and upgrades to ensure everything functions correctly without corruption. 

A company like CMIT Solutions can help you automate your backups easily. 

[Related: What’s the Big Deal About Cybersecurity Compliance?]

6. Partner With a Managed IT Services Provider Like CMIT Solutions

Just because you work in the finance and insurance industry doesn’t mean you have to be a major target for cybercriminals — CMIT Solutions of Seattle can help you implement the best practices for data backup in the Finance Industry.

Our years of experience dealing with complex networks and control systems in the industry can keep your business secure and put your mind at ease.

Let’s get started! Learn more about our managed IT and data backup and recovery services, and contact us today for a consultation.

Featured image via Unsplash

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