Data storage is a subject that affects a lot of us, whether we do it on an individual level or for business purposes. This is mainly due to the modernization of things, making the use of paper to fall into obscurity to be instead replaced in the digital form. Bank statements, work documents, images and videos are quickly changing from their physical format to being bits of digital information which can be easily passed to others through the means of the internet. This is why data storage is more relevant today than it ever was before.
Data storage for individuals/businesses
Data storage for individuals
A lot of our individual data is now being collected and made available online by the companies we use, so we have less reasons to collect that data ourselves. Whether it is some of our health records or even our banking history, collecting that data in the physical form (paper) is not as necessary as it once was. However, this doesn’t mean that individuals have no data storage requirements.
In fact, the popularization of electronic devices and computers means that most of our memorabilia such as pictures and videos gets taken and ultimately stored under the digital format, creating the need for individuals to store digital data for keep’s sake. Furthermore, we are also collecting digital information which we put on text documents; may it be phone numbers, people’s addresses or even other sensitive information such as passwords. This data is precious to us and we need to ensure we don’t lose it.
This is why a lot of individuals make backups of their data using an external hard drive, so that they possess a second copy of it, adding an extra layer of safety. This method has evolved from people being fed up of losing all their data when their computer’s main hard drive failed, and is a very common practice.
The other main popular method of data storage for individuals is to use online cloud storage services such as Microsoft One Drive. This sort of software can integrate itself with Window’s and Mac’s operating system, looking like an ordinary folder. This makes it very easy for users to upload data, and also makes it available to access from any computer and mobile device, so long as there is an internet connection present.
Data storage for businesses
Businesses have to deal with considerably more data than individuals do. From customer records to staff paperwork, going through stock inventory and contracts (to name a few). It is therefore of primordial importance that businesses do not lose their data, or else they could risk closing altogether.
Another really important factor to consider is that a lot of business data is to be kept private for the right eyes only. Events of data leaks can also have a huge negative impact on a business. This was much the case with the 2014 Sony Pictures hack, which caused unreleased materials as well as personal communications between staff to be made public.
This is why even though some businesses will use cloud storage as a solution to data storage, most companies will keep their data ‘in-house’ using their own servers. The most known method of business data storage I to create a RAID server. This kind of data storage is comprised of multiple hard drives onto which the data is duplicated and spread around, ensuring data is kept safe in the case of hardware / hard drive failure. The RAID method is complex and in the case of hardware failure it is best to let experts help with recovering RAID data. This is not so different for individuals who experience hard drive failure. The last thing anyone should do is to attempt recovering data when they are not professionally qualified to do so. This is why RAID works better for businesses, as they will often have a qualified technician present on site.
The best data storage method?
The way we store data really depends on our needs and means, and the best anyone can do is to ensure that they take an active part in ensuring that the right data gets saved at the right place. Ultimately, individuals will benefit from a simpler system, whilst businesses need a more complex infrastructure, as losing business data will have a measurably worse effect than loosing individual data and could potentially mean the end of that business.