Backing up data

Backing up your data

The more information we store in computers and the more important this information becomes to our jobs and lives, the more we feel the pain of losing files on our computers.  Wherever you store your important files (your laptop, your smartphone, a file server, etc) be sure that you have a backup copy in case the original is deleted, damaged or lost.  This might mean putting a copy of important files on your department’s file server or making sure files on your iPad are also on your laptop. 

Backing up sensitive information

If you have backups of sensitive information (patient records, student records, human research information, etc), be sure that the backups are properly protected.  Encrypting your laptop won’t protect a backup stored on an external drive.  Check that backup copies are kept in a secure location (locked office, computer server room, etc) or are encrypted.  Talk to your local IT support staff about how they recommend backing up your files and let them know if you have sensitive information in your backups. 


Sensitive data and “cloud” services

There has been a recent surge in online file storage and backup services.  While these “cloud” backup services can be helpful in keeping a backup copy of your family digital photos and other personal data where they won’t be affected by a house fire or a burglary, they are not appropriate for backing up sensitive Emory data.  Talk to your local IT support about the most secure location for your sensitive Emory data backups.