If you have an online business which hosts your eCommerce, or even backs up your data, such as Apple’s iCloud service due out later this fall, you just might get collateral damage if the government comes looking for illegal activity.
The same business disaster can occur if it is an act of God, such as a tornado, hurricane, or a flood. What most people may not realize is that there are two costs to these type of acts:
- The cost of disrupting your business, i.e. the loss of income
- The cost of replacing and restarting your business, i.e. the cost to replace what is lost and to get back up running again.
This comes in two forms of collateral damage.
Beware the Cloud
- NY Time Bit Blog has a post: F.B.I. Seizes Web Servers, Knocking Sites Offline
- CNN Money: Dropbox’s password nightmare highlights cloud risks
Would you trust a company where anyone, including a government or hacker, can access your business and shut you down? In this case, the hosted service that keeps your server software running is on a physical piece of hardware, the server. Based on the above account, this physical hardware can be physically taken by others, in this case, the government, even if it is not your problem.
It’s one thing to take down a web site, such as “disconnecting” the domain name and people accessing it, it’s quite another for physically taking the hardware. In this scenario, a server hosts a number of businesses and taking the physical hard drive means any business on that hard drive is gone as well.
Beware your Computer
The reverse is also true, losing your computer because of the disaster path that it is in.
Having a laptop stolen from your home or place of business can disrupt both your income and cost you more dollars recovering from the disaster. Same goes for both a fire or a natural disaster such as tornado or hurricane.
Do you have backups? Do you have failover plans for your eCommerce or your home business?
Backups and Storage
So, in this order, ensure you have backups of:
- Data: customer lists and financial data
- Configurations and settings
- Software and applications
Safeguarding your financial and critical business data is essential and I recommend having MULTIPLE locations for your data.
Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance.
- EFF: Government Domain Name Seizures Violate First Amendment (circleid.com)
- I Trust the Cloud – Do You? (slashgear.com)
- iCloud.com Changes to CloudMe.com (vivekravindran.com)
- iCloud Communications Sues Apple Over iCloud Trademark (macstories.net)
- FBI fat-thumbs data centre raid (go.theregister.com)
- 3 Best Practices for Protecting Virtual Environments (blogs.cisco.com)
- Mitigate Disasters with Online Backup (techie-buzz.com)