Backing up data

Information on where to back up research data.

Making regular backups of your research data can help protect against accidental or malicious data loss. Choosing what to back up and when will depend on the quantity and type of data that your research generates.

The UK Data Archive provides useful guidance on things to consider when choosing a backup procedure, including how often to back up and the type of media to use.

Data stored on UWE Bristol networked drives are backed up daily, but backups are only kept for 30 days. It is therefore advisable to always have at least one alternative backup copy of your data. A useful backup practice is the 3-2-1 approach. This means keeping at least:

  • 3 copies of your important files or datasets (a primary and two backups).
  • 2 of which should be stored locally but on different media types (eg UWE Bristol-owned external hard drives or other UWE Bristol-owned portable media).
  • 1 copy being stored off-site (or online, eg SharePoint).

However, restrictions on backup and storage locations may apply if the data contains personal information or is of a confidential nature. The working with project partners section provides links to useful data-protection resources.

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