Data is an essential part of business processes and a valuable asset of modern-day organizations. Its loss whether caused by a malicious incident (malware/virus, ransomware), natural disaster, human error, software error, or hardware failure, can result in irreversible damages on business operations, including the loss of productivity, revenue, reputation, and even customers.
IT disaster threatens many organizations and can lead to a complete shutdown, loss of access to critical systems and important data, a delay in response to customers and vendors — these consequences all can thus negatively impact the revenue, productivity, and reputation of any organization.
To mitigate the effects of such damages is the place of having a disaster recovery plan before hand with a habit of adequately following it up. Having a disaster recovery plan in place will help a company to quickly recover all or part of its lost data after the occurrence of an IT disaster.
What is a Disaster Recovery Plan?
Disaster Recovery (DR) plan involves putting in place a set of policies, tools and procedures that can enable the recovery or continuation of vital technology infrastructure and systems following a natural or human-induced disaster.
There are two major means to data recovery after an IT disaster: Traditional disaster recovery and Cloud Based Disaster recovery.
Any DR plan should start with a detailed risk assessment and impact analysis – which basically examines the current IT infrastructure, workflows, potential disasters that a business is likely to face. The goal is to identify potential vulnerabilities and disasters — everything from intrusion vulnerabilities and theft to earthquakes and floods — and then evaluate whether the IT infrastructure is up to those challenges.
Cloud Based Disaster Recovery Plan
The traditional DR – this can be as simple as backing up data to removable media like disks or tapes and manually taking them off-site for storage until they’re needed as well as second-site implementations.
Cloud based DR often used in cloud computing can be define as the process of combining strategies and services with the intention of backing up data, applications and other resources to public cloud or dedicated service providers.
With the onset of cloud technologies, public cloud and managed service providers could create a dedicated facility to offer a wide range of effective backup and DR services and capabilities which organizations can benefit from.
Consideration for a Cloud Based DR
As much as it is important to have a DR plan, it’s much more important to choose the right provider for this service. The following are points to consider when choosing a disaster recovery provider:
- Location: first, organization must put into consideration the distance of the DR provider. If it’s too close, they may be affected by geographic disasters such as storms, flooding, etc. and when it’s too far, it can increase latency and network congestion, making it even harder to access DR content.
- Dependability: Even a cloud experiences downtime, and service downtime during a recovery can be equally disastrous for the business. It is therefore very important to find out if the provider is dependable or reliable.
- Security: Ensure that the provider can offer authentication, virtual private networks (VPNs), encryption and other tools needed to safeguard the business’s resources. Evaluate the compliance requirements and be sure that the provider is certified to meet compliance standards that relate to the business.
- Scalability: A disaster recovery solution that does not scale as your business expands can lead to all kinds of complications such as the need for additional licenses, lack of functionality, and exceeding the limits of what you can back up in terms of data.
Benefits of Cloud Based DR
- Pay-as-you-go options.
- Flexibility and scalability.
- Easy testing and fast recovery.
Before considering any DR plan, the plan must be tested as well as updated on a regular basis to ensure that IT staffs are proficient at implementing the appropriate response and recovery successfully and in a timely manner, and that recovery takes place within an acceptable timeframe for the business.