Protect Your Data, Protect Your Business

Post Date - Mar 26, 2024

It is crucial to back up and protect your data, especially when running your own business. Why is this important? For example, in 2009, T-Mobile used only the cloud as their data storage method, which resulted in Sidekick users having their contacts, calendars, and photos deleted. If T-Mobile had used multiple backups, this setback may have been prevented. We can learn from them to help make sure you don’t make the same mistakes with your trucking business.

  1. To fortify your data protection strategy, adhere to the 3-2-1 backup rule: maintain three copies of your data, store them on two different media types, and keep one copy offsite. Utilize secure cloud storage solutions as an additional layer of protection, encrypting your backups to safeguard sensitive information.
  2. Identify the documents you should backup. Owner Operators should consider backing up:
    1. Vehicle Documents
      1. Vehicle Registration: Keep copies for as long as you own the vehicle.
      2. Insurance Certificates: Retain copies for the duration of the insurance policy until you receive replacements.
    2. Operational Documents:
      1. Commercial Driver's License (CDL): Keep a copy as long as the license is valid.
      2. Trip Reports and Logs: Retain logs for a minimum period to comply with Hours of Service (HOS) regulations. Regulations may vary, but a common requirement is to retain logs for at least six months.
      3. Maintenance Records: Keep digital records of vehicle maintenance and repair documentation for compliance and maintenance tracking.
    3. Financial Documents:
      1. Invoices and Billing Records: Retain for several years for tax and accounting purposes. The specific period may depend on tax regulations but can be 7 years.
      2. Expense Receipts: Keep receipts for business expenses for at least three to seven years, depending on tax regulations.
    4. Business Registration and Permits:
      1. Business Registration: Keep copies for the duration of your business operation.
      2. Permits and Licenses: Retain permits and licenses for as long as they are valid.
    5. Contracts and Agreements:
      1. Client Contracts: Keep copies for the duration of the contract and indefinitely.
      2. Lease Agreements: Retain lease agreements for the duration of the lease and indefinitely.
    6. Tax Documents:
      1. Tax Returns: Keep copies for at least seven years, as this is the general requirement for federal tax returns.
      2. 1099 Forms: Retain copies for several years for tax purposes.

Regularly review and update the document retention policy to align with any changes in regulations or business practices.

At Roadrunner, we understand that it’s crucial to have the support of specialists to ensure compliance with specific regulations and to tailor document retention policies to the unique needs of the business. With our in-house advisors and planners, Orange + Black Has Your Back. We work with our business partners to set their trucking business up for success.

If you’re ready to grow your owner operator business, partner with Roadrunner. Apply here.