Your data is valuable. Whether it's personal or professional, it irepresents your time, your passions, finances, hard work, family, and more. Recreating lost data can take time and effort, and is often impossible to recreate or re-aggregate once lost.
There are generally four culprits of data loss: hardware failures, software bugs, human action, and natural disasters. Although hardware tends to be quite reliable, all mechanical components will eventually face crisis.
Creating a backup (copying data to a secondary location) is a way to protect your important files. By having several copies of the data, it does not matter if one is destroyed (the cost is only that of the restoration of the lost data from the backup). This means that even if you are capable of recreating every file on your computer from memory, the time alone to recreate and reconfigure a new setup is in itself a reason to have a backup.
We recommend to have multiple backups in multiple locations, to cover all the possible culprits of data loss. For example, I once helped a couple who both worked from home and both had external hard drives attached to their iMacs keeping regular backups of their work. What they didn't plan on was the apartment above their to flood, sending a deluge of water down on both their computers and their hard drives. They were both in tears as their professional and personal lives were both contained on these machines. As it turned out, the design of the enclosure of the iMac actually kept any liquid from entering the machine and while the external drives were shorted, the iMacs remained unharmed. However, this is the only time I can remember such an outcome.
The couple in this example would have had complete peace of mind had they had another layer of protection for their data: remote backups. Also called cloud backups, a remote backup is one created over a network and stored on a server, which also provides redundancy to the backup.
There are many providers of this service, however generally there is one that I recommend over all the rest, and it is Backblaze. Though the GUI (graphical user interface, what the program looks like) is't robust or gorgeous, the platform itself is easy to use and thorough, and has additional benefits such as backing up external hard drives and connected volumes as well. It is simple and reliable, and can be accessed from anywhere you have an internet connection. Whether you need a few files or all of them, Backblaze has you covered. If indeed you do need to recover all of your files, you can choose to download them, or have them overnighted to you on a external drive.
Additionally, Backblaze also provides a "Locate Lost Computer" feature for no additional charge. This information can be relayed to the police to help stolen machines be recovered successfully.
Finally, one of the most appealing aspects of Backblaze is that there is no data storage limit, and no maximum file size.
For those who are curious about local backups, Mac OS X's built-in program TimeMachine is our recommendation every time. Simple to use and highly reliable, TimeMachine provides a complete backup of all your files. For more information about TimeMachine, check out this article by Apple: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201250
In the event that you have already experienced data loss, we can help! We never charge for data loss analysis, and in the event that your drive has suffered severe mechanical failure, we partner with Kroll OnTrack, an industry leader in data recovery. OnTrack has successfully completed over half a million recoveries since 1985, and has the largest R&D team in the industry. Request a consultation with us today to recover your irreplaceable data, whether on a failed hard drive, flash drive, laptop, desktop, RAID, or mobile device.