A human makes a data backup mistake.

Data Backups and the Erroneous Behavior of Your Employees

When Hurricane Harvey swept through Houston, it left behind catastrophe, in both lives lost and in at least $125 billion in damages. Twenty seconds in Mexico City in September 2017 was all it took to shake hundreds of businesses to the ground. In California, too, wildfires ravaged 1.2 million acres, destroying more than 10,000 structures and killing hundreds. These kinds of disasters exist all over. And yet, the number one threat to your business’s data is your employees.

So, how are your employees damaging your data backup system? We’ve compiled some of the most common ways employees can release your hard earned data into the world.

Simple Human Error

People make mistakes. This isn’t surprising. And when it comes to technology and data, things can get particularly hairy. If you were in Hawaii this past January, you may have gotten this text: “BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.” Whether you sought immediate shelter or a change of pants, you soon realized the ripple effect of human error when the wrong button was pressed during a routine shift change.

Employees can accidentally delete files, move files to unknown locations and more, effectively ballooning downtime for businesses with lax backup protocols. It should be noted that the employees of businesses with strong backup protocols do commit the same errors. However, the more prepared businesses get their data back.

“90% of all cyber claims stemmed from some type of human error or behavior.” – Chief Executive

Leaving the Company

Yes, there are always those times when a disgruntled employee walks out with access to data. When leaving the company, bad feelings could cause any number of circumstances to arise. Ex-employees could access your cloud computing tools and delete files, projects, or tasks. Likewise, access to the network is often through Wi-Fi. A disgruntled employee could sit outside the building and decimate your network files from a mobile phone.

The temperament of the exit is irrelevant. Think: An employee who accessed work email through a home computer could have downloaded plenty of sensitive data onto that computer. You should have protocols in place that eliminate access in entirety, whether the employee is disgruntled or not.

Malicious Intent

Malicious intent could be the big problem with employees who leave the company. But this could also arise with current employees. You obviously don’t want to spend your day giving sidelong glances at employees, but knowing this is a possibility, you want to ensure you have taken the steps to protect your data from bad actors within your organization.

Part of this can come from network architecture and the principle of least privilege. By giving employees access to the least amount of data they need to complete their tasks, you’re well on your way to safeguarding your data.


There are many regulatory bodies that govern business, and keeping in tune with their cybersecurity requirements is a full-time job in itself. But the reasons are pertinent. Much of data loss for businesses could’ve been avoided with due diligence in terms of compliance. But, of course, a good majority of businesses do not maintain adequate compliance measures. In 2018, 90% of firms will receive compliance deficiency letters.

Read Blog: 3 of the Worst IT-related Disasters Ever (and What You Can Learn from Them)