Businesses and individuals alike have all grown to rely on computers. The reliance is never more apparent than when something happens to the horrid little box that makes our lives easier. We expect computers to react a certain way, in certain situations. It nearly always comes as a surprise when the beloved little box, know as a computer, refuses to boot up. Probably even more shocking, is the dawning that we've neglected to backup or prepare for the unforeseen disaster that has just been thrust upon us.
Regardless of the number of times you have experienced the dread of being unable to access the information trapped in the god-awful computerized contraption, we are always invariably unprepared.
The reality of it is that computers, not only contain moving parts, but they like other machines, they are prone to failure at some point in their lives. Not only can hardware failures occur, but viruses can also corrupt data making it impossible to retrieve. Regardless of the litany of words used to bully the box into behaving, the truth is that the only offence is a good defense.
So how do you prepare for a computer tragedy?
Prepare for the Worst
In structuring an offense it's important to realize the power of reinforcements: backups are invaluable and will save countless hours of shameless degradation. Be sure that you backup data and files on a regular basis, there are a number of tools that will automate the process.
It is critical that you check the backup log to ensure that a backup was completed properly. I cannot begin to describe the devastation felt when it is realized that though there was a backup process in place, the backup never actually occurred. Realizing this during a restore is likely to push any computer lover over the edge. It is a good idea to store a weekly back up off site. This is especially helpful, if an unforeseen fire or a natural disaster strikes.
Protection is critical!
Build A Wall
If the computer has Internet access, either a hardware or software firewall (or combination there of) must be used. The firewall creates a barrier between a computer and the world. Without a firewall, Internet worms are capable of exploiting security holes and are able to create what are referred to as 'back doors'. These back doors can then be used to gain access to personal information stored on the computer, including password files, and financial information.
Trust No One
If you are an avid Internet surfer or downloader be sure to scan any downloads prior to opening or installing. Up to date anti-virus software should be used to ensure, that computers do not become infected with malicious viruses that will ruin your life. Scan any email attachments prior to opening regardless of whom they are from. Files that end with .scr, .pif and .exe can contain viruses that will wreak havoc with your data and emotional well being.
Preparedness goes a long way, and a little foresight will ensure that, while a computer might be an inconvenience, you will not be defeated.
Anti-virus Software -http://www.military-software.com/anti-virus-software.htm
Firewalls - http://www.monitoring-software.net/intrusion-detection-software.htm
About The Author
Sharon Housley manages marketing for NotePage, Inc. http://www.notepage.net a company specializing in alphanumeric paging, SMS and wireless messaging software solutions. Other sites and additional articles can be found at http://www.softwaremarketingresource.com , and http://www.small-business-software.net