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World Backup Day on March 31, 2014, is an independent initiative started in 2013 to raise awareness about the importance of regular backups for your technology devices.

According to research by Google, computer storage drives have failure rates between 2% and 10% [1]. Most of us have lost critical documents and irreplaceable information on our technology devices. Many people falsely think their documents are safe because they are saved on the computer’s hard drive.  The best way to avoid potential loss of personal and sensitive information is to back it up!

Why should I backup my files?

While technology increasingly enables us to create and save important information, ITS Security recommends consumers ensure these items are in a safe location in the event of theft, loss, natural disaster, damage, or a system failure. Backing up your files means making a copy of these items and placing the backup in a secure location.

What types of technology items should I consider backing up?

  • Laptop
  • Computer
  • Tablet
  • iPod
  • Phone
  • Photos and videos on social media sites

Options for backing up your devices:

The safest way to protect sensitive and confidential documents is to encrypt the documents or folder before taking a backup.

  • Cloud Backup: (for personal documents/files/photos/videos etc.)This is similar to an offsite backup; you can install an app on your computer to instantly and automatically copy your files to the cloud. This option makes multiple copies of your files at various locations around the world. The security of the data is only as strong as your password.
    • Apple iCloud
    • Iron Mountain
    • DropBox
    • Carbonite
    • Local Backup: Copy your most important files onto an external hard drive or USB flash drive. This can be disconnected and stored in a secure location such as a locked office. Use ‘Time Machine’ backup on Apple computers, and ‘Backup and Restore’ on Windows computers.
    • NAS – Network Attached Storage (for full-time Carolina faculty and staff needing to store various types of non-confidential University information) The University provides a network file share at \\ Learn more about NAS.


If using a Cloud backup service, your backup should work automatically. We recommend you check your storage location and your automated program (if using) periodically to ensure everything is working properly.

Technology Help at Carolina

Everyone at Carolina is welcome to contact the whose professionals will either answer your question or route you to the right person for support.

Information Technology Services — Contact Information

1. Pinheiro, Weber, Barroso. “Failure Trends in a Large Disk Drive Population”. Feb 2007. Mar 2014. <>

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