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Data Backup at UniSA

All University data should be stored in a location that is secure and regularly backed-up.

NOTE: Locations such as USB drives and local hard drives on your computer do not meet this requirement and should only be considered as a convenient working area.

The University provides access to highly available and secure network and cloud storage that should be able to meet your data requirements in most cases.

For more information see links below:

NOTE: As a staff member at UniSA you are responsible for the management of your own data.

All electronically held University data should be stored in such a way that it is backed up regularly; preferably by saving it on a network drive or cloud service that is backed up nightly. Protecting information from accidental loss, corruption, or unauthorised access is critical to the business needs of the University.

There are many reasons that data may be lost inclusive of errors such as accidental deletion or over-writing of data, data corruption, and physical disasters such as fire or flood. Hence, UniSA Information Strategy and Technology Services (ISTS) regularly backs up all of the University's centrally stored data to protect against data loss.

A backup is simply a copy of data that is retained for a period of time in a separate location to the original data.  This allows the data to be restored from the backup copy in the event of the original data being lost or corrupted.

NOTE: It is important to note that all information detailed in this topic relates only to centrally stored data, and does not apply to data stored on the desktop of your PC or laptop, on a USB, on an external hard drive, or any other location outside of the University's data centres.

The frequency of the backup and the duration of retaining this backup varies depending on the type of data or the purpose of the data.

For the majority of data held in the University's data centres there are two backups performed.

  • Nightly Backups - As the name suggests, 'Nightly backups' are performed each night, and the data copied each evening is retained for 31 days.
  • End-of-Year Full Backup - The 'End-of-Year "Full" backup' is performed once a year, usually late in December or in January, and a copy of the yearly "Full" backup is retained for a minimum of 7 years; however, some data is retained for a longer period due to legislative requirements (e.g. Research data).

How long our backup data is retained varies, depending on the type of data or purpose of the data.  For example, Research data, Courseware (learnonline) data, and email data are all retained for different periods of time which differs to the retention of all other 'general' data.  For simplicity this topic details recovering 'general' data stored in the University's data centres.  If you require information about the retention of Research, Courseware (learnonline) or email data please see Data Retention Duration page or contact the IT Help Desk.