Having a business continuity and disaster recovery plan to protect your data should be a top priority for every business leader. Without a BCDR plan, your data is susceptible to irrevocable loss. Should disaster strike, the effects could be devastating to your business. If you think that your company is immune from hazardous events, think again.
Even tech giants with robust BCDR solutions can fall victim to unforeseeable events. For example, on Aug. 13, one of Google's European datacenters experienced an outage as a lightning storm raged outside the facility. According to PCMag contributor Chloe Albanesius, lightning struck the power grid outside the data center four times in a row, causing damage and a loss of power to storage systems.
"Although automatic auxiliary systems restored power quickly, and the storage systems are designed with battery backup, some recently written data was located on storage systems which were more susceptible to power failure from extended or repeated battery drain," Google said in an online statement.
“In almost all cases”, the statement continued, “data was moved to stable storage and was recovered shortly after the incident. However, some 0.000001 percent of persistent disk space was permanently damaged.” While that doesn't seem like a lot to small and midsize businesses, Ars Technica contributor Peter Bright pointed out that, what seems like a tiny percentage, could equal gigabytes of unrecoverable data.
The critical need for business continuity and disaster recovery
Events such as this happen all the time and generally result in devastating data loss. While Google will likely recover from its datacenter loss, many SMBs aren’t as fortunate. According to the Small Business Association, up to 25 percent of small businesses don't reopen following a major disaster - further evidence of the critical need for business continuity and disaster recovery.
To make sure your business stays afloat in the midst of disaster, you need an effective BCDR strategy. Below we’ve highlighted three steps you can take to help keep your data protected.
- Backup to the cloud - Cloud storage is a great option for making sure your data doesn't go anywhere, says Network World contributor Cindy LaChapelle. Cloud computing allows companies to invest in long-term, off-premises storage solutions that prove more scalable and affordable in the long run. Additionally, cloud storage providers generally use enterprise-level backup and disaster recovery solutions that most SMBs could not afford as a stand-alone solution.
- Determine your recovery point and time objectives - Conduct a risk assessment of your systems to determine where the vulnerabilities are and define recovery point objectives (RPO) and recovery time objectives (RTO) according to business needs and importance. RPO and RTO are the point and time your business systems can be down before suffering damaging financial loss.
- Have a plan – Develop a Disaster Recovery plan that outlines what systems are the most important to get back up and running, RTO and RPO objectives, critical communication contacts, and lines of command. According to Small Business Computing's Pam Baker, your DR strategy should include plans for how employees will be able to work from remote locations in the event that your on-premises option aren't available.In the event of disaster, make sure you have a way to access your data should you lose power or working equipment. Having a clearly defined plan for responding to disaster will help your business recover operations more quickly and effectively.
Begin your BCDR efforts by contacting the IT experts at Pinnacle, An Advanced Imaging Solutions Company. Pinnacle can conduct a threat management assessment to help you develop a comprehensive strategy for business continuity and disaster recovery. No one wants to lose data - no matter how miniscule. Contact Pinnacle today get started.