Guard Your Business Against Nature’s Fury

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Tropical Storm Isaac has come and gone—followed quickly by Joyce, Kirk, and Leslie. Is your business prepared for whatever natural disaster comes next? The time to plan is now, while the skies are blue.

Here are tips for keeping your business property secure.

Business records. Create an index of important records, including those that are stored digitally, and those you keep in paper form. Scan the paper copies to the CDs, DVDs or external drives where you store your digital records. Keep an extra copy off-site, and rotate your storage devices so all copies are up-to-date. An investment in cloud storage—that is, a place on the internet where you can back up your records to a remote location—is also a smart move. Update and backup everything on a regular schedule, either daily, weekly, or monthly.

Equipment. Take time- and date-stamped photos or digital recordings of your business equipment. Maintain a log of purchases, including receipts and warranties. Keep copies of pictures and paperwork on transportable disks, as well as in your cloud storage account, and include a scanned copy of your insurance policy. After the disaster, you want to be able to get current information to your insurance agent quickly.

Buildings. What extreme weather is typical for your area? For example, if you can expect flooding from rising tides or wind-driven rain, you may need to board up windows and sandbag doors. Locate supply sources for these items, as well as any necessary tools for installation, so you’ll know where to go and what you can expect to pay. You may also want to designate areas within your office or building to secure tall shelving where you can relocate computers and other office equipment.

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