The number of files that are stored on personal devices throughout the UK is increasing everyday. It seems, however, that even though personal photos, music and other files are priceless to their owners, consumers are not taking the protection of their digital world very seriously.

With more than 25 billion songs downloaded to date and an estimation that 880 billion photographs will be taken this year, the amount of files stored on personal devices is growing at an exponential rate. However, a recent survey found that one in five people have never backed up any of their files.

To put that in context, that works out at around 180 billion files that would be lost if those devices failed or were stolen – that’s more than 25 files for every person in the world. And as more than 840 personal devices are stolen in the UK every month, failing to back up your gadgets is like leaving your front door unlocked for any intruders to come in and help themselves to your precious items whenever they like.

Today, phones are used for much more than just making calls or sending a quick text. They have started to replace your family photo album, record collection and bank statements, as well as your address book and calendar, so you are literally carrying around everything but the kitchen sink everywhere you go.

The survey also found that nearly two thirds of consumers in the UK would be upset about loosing their digital photos and almost half of the population thinks that their digital world is safe when it is only backed up on a hard–drive. However, when it comes to backup the thing that should never be underestimated is the power of three. Backup, backup, backup!

Number One

Number one is your original copy. This is the file that is saved directly on to your laptop, smartphone, camera or tablet – and the copy that’s most likely to be lost.

Number Two

This is your first backup. These backups should be stored on a good quality external drive. This allows you to keep a copy of your important files separate from the main device you use to access them on – keeping your data safe even if the original file is lost.

Number Three

This is the most neglected yet most crucial stage of the backup trio. Backing up your data to the cloud as well as on your hard-drive provides maximum protection for your files. With the right software you can backup your precious photos, music and more instantly to the cloud.

Cloud backup stores your data in an extra location – keeping it safe even if the original file or hard-drive is damaged. It also removes the need to manually store and prioritise your files so you will never misplace your ‘baby’s first steps’ video again!

Physical copies of photos of your kids growing up, your wedding video and your music collection will always be stored safely at home. But next time you capture a once in a lifetime memory on your smart-phone think three – it really is the magic number!