Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending. ~Maria Robinson
So… I’m moving. We finally have the homestead modernized and we are ready to start picking up heavy items, drive them a mile and a half down the road, so we can pick them up again. Consequently, my body is tired, my brain is tired, my enthusiasm for writing a newsletter is minimal. In other news, if anyone wants to buy a house in the Sumner area, I will have one for sale in about a month.
Because I’m tired, I’ve spent a huge chunk of the day reading headlines and looking for something, anything, to spark my creative juices for a newsletter. As I write, Hurricane Dorian has devastated the Bahama’s and is headed for the east coast. The losses are substantial. My heart aches for those who are affected. I’m so thankful this area hasn’t had to face such devastation. My mind wanders. I remember the fires that devastated Paradise, California last year and the fires that destroyed huge areas of Oregon forest the year before that. I’m too young to remember the Columbus Day Storm of 1962, but I do remember the safety drills we practiced in grade school in case another storm came. I remember the 18 inches of snow we had in the late 60’s, and several storms with winds of 80-100+ mph. And just last week, my friend in Georgia asked if I was okay. She heard a report of an earth quake off the coast of Coos Bay. We do live near the Cascadia Fault line. So I ask: If disaster came to visit today, am I prepared?
Personal safety should be first on the list. Everyone should have a stash of food, water, matches, flash lights, batteries, blankets, first aid kits, utility knives, sleeping bags, tarps and a plan to communicate with loved ones.
I wondered if I was missing anything and did a little digging. I found an app for my cell phone. It is produced by Insurance Information Institute. It is called Know Your Plan Mobile App. If you have a smart phone, I recommend installing it. It is free. It has a variety of check lists to help you along. The personal check list says I will need copies of insurance policies, birth and marriage certificates, passports, drivers licenses, social security cards, recent tax returns, employment info, wills & deeds, stocks, bond and other negotiable certificates, bank, savings and retirement account numbers and a home inventory.
Whew!! That’s a lot of stuff. So the question is: What do you do with all that stuff? I’m going to scan my documents and save them to my computer. Once on the computer, they will be included in the cloud backup. I will keep a card in my wallet and on my cell phone with password (and only the password) to the cloud site. The reasoning behind keeping password only is: I already know who I pay every month for cloud backup services and the login name will either be my email address or the standard phrase I use for logins when the email address won’t work. The only thing I won’t remember is the password (because all passwords are unique). You are using unique passwords right? If my wallet or cell phone is stolen, the only thing at risk is the password. No identifying information associated with the password is included. Thieves would have to be incredibly lucky to pick out the one web site out of millions that is associated with this password.
The list for business is similar. Insurance Information Institute says access to critical information will be paramount to staying in business. Statistically, forty percent of businesses do not reopen after a disaster and an additional 25% fail within one year. Critical data should be backed up off site. Insurance policies, banking information as well as phone numbers of employees, key customers, vendors, your insurance professional and an inventory of business equipment, supplies and merchandise should be included in the backup. https://www.iii.org/article/when-disaster-strikes-preparation-response-and-recovery
May I propose we set a goal? Let’s schedule a couple of hours this week and gather this information together. If you need assistance with setting up scanners or securing data offsite, call me. I’d love to help.
That’s it for this month. Please Keep Your Data Safe, and Keep Your Family Safer!