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Summary:

You’d think at this stage of the game, most computer users would be savvy enough to have a data backup plan in place. But you’d be wrong. That’s why every storage, disaster recovery, backup vendor on the planet has glommed onto World Backup Day.

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You’d think at this stage of the game, most computer users would be savvy enough to have a data backup plan in place. But you’d be wrong.

That’s why every storage, disaster recovery and backup vendor on the planet has glommed onto World Backup Day, which is Saturday, March 31.

The day itself was born out of a casual thought posted to Reddit last year by Adam Jeffreson. Cynics assumed Jeffreson worked for a storage or backup company, but that is not the case, he said via email.

“Basically I knew someone who broke their laptop, and they lost loads of important documents because they had never backed it up. When I asked them about why they didn’t, they said they had never thought to. After thinking about this I realized it was actually pretty common, and that most people needed to be reminded to do it. Hence, backup day.”

Reddit commenters jumped on the topic. One group set the actual date — March 31 seemed a good idea.  Another group started the website, which implores users: “Don’t be an April Fool. Back up your files. Check your restores.”

Last year was the first World Backup Day but it seems a lot of people still don’t get it. Sixty percent of 640 small and medium businesses surveyed recently don’t even budget for backup. And just 15 percent have any kind of automated online backup plan in place, according to the research which was conducted by Compass Partners for Mozy, an online backup vendor.

Many companies leave whatever backing up is done to the discretion of individual employees. That means a lot of files are stuck on USB drives or emailed to personal Hotmail and Gmail accounts. Sound familiar?

Jeffreson sounds happy that people took his idea and ran with it: “Posting an idea on the Internet is giving it away. I’m happy it went somewhere.”

It sure did: Vendors from Backblaze to Trend Micro to Spideroak were all aboard with their World Backup Day pitches this week. As self-serving as all that is for them, just ask yourself: When was the last time you backed up your files?  There’s no time like the present — or  maybe March 31.

Some rights reserved by Phil Aaronson

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  1. Wow! What is that machine, a PDP-8? I haven’t seen DECtape drives for years! :-) You could punch holes in the media and the tape would still be readable!

    1. i love flickr!

  2. Backing up has gotten so much easier than it used to be. I remember using a tape drives all those years ago and having to take one home with me from work every week. Now you can just install an online service and it takes care of that offsite version for you. It is so much easier there is really no excuse to not backup any more.

    1. @john You’re right — and yet, i think the research showing a small minority of smbs w/backup plans in place is probably accurate

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