Most organizations believe that their data is well protected because they have a backup system in place, or because they use a RAID array to protect their data against disk failure. The truth is very few entities have complete protection.
A complete data protection solution requires protection in several areas. Hardware resiliency protects against component failure. Point in time protection ensures that data can be recovered from some point in the past, whether seconds, minutes, hours or days. Geographic protection prevents loss of data in case of some sort of site wide failure. Many organizations also require some sort of long term retention of critical data for compliance purposes or in case of legal action.
The following list describes some of the strategies used for each type of data protection:
Hardware Resilience - Protects against hardware component failure:
- RAID Controller cards
External Storage Arrays
Point-in-time Protection - Protects against data loss or corruption due to hardware or software failure, user error or deliberate actions:
- Enterprise Backup Utilities
Software or Hardware Based Snapshots
Continuous Data Protection Tools
Geographic Protection - Protects against site wide failures:
- Off-site Tape Storage
Disk based backup replication
Storage Array Based Replication
Long-Term Protection - Used when business or legal policies require retention of data beyond standard backup retention:
- File System and E-Mail Archiving