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Evolution Of Data Backups: A Crucial Facet In The Digital Age

The critical importance of data backups, encapsulating its past, present and future, is an essential facet of any business operating in the digital age.

Today, nearly every facet of a company’s operation, from customer information to internal financials, is stored digitally. In light of this, data backups have become a vital task for IT teams worldwide to ensure business continuity. A failure to have robust data backup protocols could be devastating; research suggests that 70% of small businesses may fold within a year following a significant data loss incident.

Nathan Carroll, Product Lead at M247, recently highlighted the history of data backup and shared his insights into significant technological milestones and the potential future of this crucial digital activity. Interestingly, the concept of data backups can be traced back to the Industrial Revolution. This period was marked by the use of punch cards to manage large volumes of data, a development that led to the birth of the International Business Machines (IBM), eventually making punch card technology a staple in data management processes.

As we advanced into the mid-20th century, following the invention of tape drives, the first hard disk drive (HDD) was introduced. Despite being exceptionally costly for just a few megabytes of data storage back in the 1950s, the capacity of HDDs dramatically expanded by the 1990s, concurrently becoming more affordable. With the advent of transportable media, HDD backups became increasingly crucial for businesses, as HDDs were quicker at backing up data. Software like Cobian Backup or Windows Built-in Backup enabled this process, automating the task and marking a significant milestone in data preservation.

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By the turn of the 21st century, cloud-powered computing offered a cost-effective alternative for businesses, moving away from traditional on-premises storage. Businesses could now effortlessly store data backups in numerous locations via the cloud, accessing them from any connected device. In the wake of increasing cyber-attacks throughout 2010s, businesses prioritised cloud storage for their critical data. Findings revealed that by 2019, 84% of organisations worldwide relied on the cloud for data storage and backup. Consequently, Backup as a Service (BaaS) solutions were introduced by providers, bolstering the security of data as cloud storage became a global norm.

Looking ahead, the future of data backups appears to hold promising developments as advancement in technology continues. Reports indicate that nearly 95% of enterprises utilise hybrid cloud environments, with almost two-thirds of large businesses employing multiple public cloud providers. As a result, backup solutions that can function effectively across different cloud services from varying suppliers are likely to grow in demand. Besides, by 2030, it is expected that over 25.44 billion Internet of Things (IoT) devices will be operational functioning as data collectors and processors. As IoT technology matures, these devices could potentially serve as data backup solutions in cases of data loss or corruption, becoming an essential tool in a business’s data backup procedure suite.

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Source: securitybrief

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