Small businesses often feel that topics like data backup and disaster recovery plans are only for big enterprises and organizations. As a result, they fail to take action when critical decisions should be made. In 2016, and the years to come, this will prove to be a fatal mistake for thousands of small businesses. Don’t let your business be one of them.

5 Reasons Data Backup Must be a Priority

Losing data is frightening for many reasons. “One of the scariest parts of losing your data is that you might not know exactly what it is that you’ve lost,” explains Diskcopy, an industry leader in external storage solutions. “Unless you keep detailed records of everything you do on your system, it’s quite possible that you won’t even know something is missing until you need it, in which case you’re empty handed. This can have serious consequences in the business world.”

Most businesses don’t avoid data backup out of stubbornness or mistrust. The majority fail to act simply due to ignorance about the various risks and threats that abound. In order to enlighten yourself and prepare your business, here’s a look at a few reasons why data backup is necessary.

1. Audits and Tax Purposes

As you know, you’re required to keep files and business records for a number of years after filing taxes. And in the unfortunate situation that your business is audited, you’ll need these documents to prove your return is accurate and honest. Unfortunately, one fatal disaster can destroy all of these files. Don’t expect the IRS to have pity on you, though. They could levy a hefty fine.

By backing up your data, you don’t have to worry about complicated matters like these. Your data will always be there, meaning you’ll remain compliant, regardless of the situation.

2. Deadly Downtime

For many businesses, downtime spells disaster. In fact, one study from the University of Texas shows that 43 percent of companies that suffer major data loss never fully reopen in the future.

Regardless of the cause, you can’t afford downtime. By backing up your data, you can avoid costly side effects, and provide your customers with around the clock service.

3. Human Error

It doesn’t matter how well trained your employees are, human errors can and do happen. And while you can’t necessarily avoid all errors in your company, you can establish a safety net of sorts by backing up data and instituting solutions that mitigate the damages associated with these mistakes. While employee training is certainly important, you never want to be without a foolproof backup solution.

4. Malicious Cyber Attacks

In 2015, 43 percent of all cyber attacks worldwide were against businesses with fewer than 250 workers. So despite the assumption that massive organizations are primary targets, it’s actually small businesses that are stuck in the crosshairs. From vicious viruses and malware to highly sophisticated attacks, it’s smart to have a data backup solution in place.

5. Natural Disasters

Believe it or not, natural disasters and inclement weather can lead to hardware malfunctions and data loss. Things like floods, wind, and lightning strikes can’t be prevented, but you can protect your data by establishing a backup solution.

Now’s the Time to Take Action

You can’t afford to sit back and watch. While you may feel that your small business is protected against things like malicious cyber attacks, the truth is you’re never safe. In order to diminish the ill-effects of data loss and better shield your small business, it’s critically important that you invest in a backup solution soon.