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Backing Up Vital Information: Cyber Safe Advice

Backing up your information regularly will come to your rescue if worst comes to worst.

Backing up information

The information held on your computer systems and devices is often irreplaceable. Ransomware – an ever-growing cyber threat - in particular, works by making all of your files unreadable, and demands money in order to access them again.

  • Plan for the worst – If you were to lose your files, do you have a recent back up? Having your files backed up to external devices ensures that the back up does not get lost in the event of Ransomware, or other attacks. 
  • Ensure that the backup is password protected so that if the backup was to be stolen the information on it would be inaccessible.

Below, Cyber Sam highlights other considerations you may need to make if you have been affected by Ransomware

When it comes to cyber-attacks such as Ransomware, backing up the files on your device is crucial. This way, you do not have to hand over any money to cyber criminals.


There are two main means in which your data can be back up; physical hard drives and online via a cloud based system.

External Hard drives

  • Portable, fast and efficient, they can often handle a large amount of data.
  • Regularly check the hard drive is working correctly and backups are up to date.
  • Storing sensitive information on your back-up? Encrypt the data with a password to ensure this is not easily accessible.

Some portable hard drives provide a ‘one touch’ feature which backs up your data at the touch of a button, or at automatically pre-set intervals.

Online (Cloud)
The cloud is very popular due to its ease of use and the unlimited space available.

  • The cloud can act as both a back up and a primary storage system.
  • Do not use USB memory sticks, recordable CDs or DVDs to back up your data. Although these may be inexpensive and convenient, they share limited capacity and are easily lost or stolen. CDs and DVDs are also very slow to transfer your data.


To ensure the safest level of backing up; it is recommended you have one physical and one virtual/online back-up e.g. an external hard drive and a cloud based system.

Businesses can find out tailored, more in-depth information and advice about back-ups on the Warwickshire Business Watch advice sheet