Is Your Web Host Really Safeguarding Your Data?

SafeYour data is often your most important item on your website. Losing it would cause your website to stop working, not being able to receive orders, gather leads, and could lead to Google dropping your pages from its search engine.

It is the lifeblood of any website.

Yes, you should be performing your own backups on a regular basis to keep your data safe. However, data can often reside in many places like a database, temporary files not accessible via FTP, etc… It’s not always easy to backup 100% of your site’s data.

But my host says they perform backups

You ask your host if your site and data are backed up and they say “Sure, we maintain backups of all data”. So you’re all set right?

Maybe not…

In the past few months, I’ve seen the following “backups” fail at other hosting providers:

  • One hosting provider had a corrupt backup system. A server failure occurred where the data was not retrievable, and with no working backups, hundreds of sites lost all of their data (files, databases, emails)
  • Another prominent budget-based provider stated they had Enterprise level backups. But when a VPS server failed, they found their backup system didn’t work as expected. Restores were taking forever to complete. It took them OVER ONE MONTH to restore all the data. Yes, one full month for data to be restored.
  • One of our clients described how a large well-known Managed Server hosting company dropped the ball for their server. Even though they were supposed to have backups daily, a server failure resulted in the client losing weeks of data, as the backups were not verified to be working properly to perform a quick and orderly restore.

As you can see, what is advertised and what actually occurs can be two very different things…

At LexiConn, we take data security VERY seriously

How seriously?

  • We start with hardware RAID-10 equipped servers. This means each server is running a minimum of four 15,000 rpm enterprise SAS drives. This allows up to two drives to fail without any data loss. RAID is not a backup solution, but it increases reliability and minimizes the possibility of a single drive failure resulting in extended downtime and restores.
  • We perform a local backup over a secure Gigabit private network of *every* server each night, and we retain current day plus 5 days back worth of backups. This backup system consists of eight 2 Terabyte drives in a hardware RAID-10 setup. These backups can be used to restore files for clients when needed, and serve as one side (our secondary option) of our 3 pronged disaster recovery plan.
  • Every server is backed up every 6 hours via our secure Gigabit private network to a few centralized backup servers. These backup servers are comprised of at least 6 hard drives in a hardware RAID-10 configuration, and are running the industry’s best CDP (Continuous Data Protection) software. This system allows us to quickly (at rates up to 200 GB an hour) bare metal restore any server that suffers a RAID failure or multiple drive failures, with data that is only 6 hours old at most. This is our primary line of defense.
  • Our last line of defense consists of a daily backup being performed on every server to a remote datacenter that is 1,000 miles away. The backup servers in this geographically diverse datacenter employ six hard drives each in a RAID-10 config. The backups are sent via a secure tunnel, and this system would be used in the event there was an emergency that affected our entire primary datacenter.

In summary:

* THREE systems of backups for maximum redundancy

* Each client’s data is replicated on a minimum of 24 hard drives

* Hardware RAID-10 used at every level for increased reliability

Seem like overkill? We don’t think so. We see it as safeguarding the most important assets of our clients.

Is your current hosting provider taking this level of care and implementing multiple measures to insure your data is protected? If not, you better make sure your own backups are happening regularly, and include all the various facets that make up your website.

Or, give us a call, and we can discuss how we can help you have peace of mind when it comes to protecting your valuable information and backing up all of your hard work.

It may seem like every web host offers the same thing, but there are stark differences that can make all the difference when disaster strikes.

Have a disaster story to share? Please do so in the comments below…

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