Disaster Recovery

What Bases Should a BDR Cover?

As much as you hope it will not happen to your business, a disaster could very well strike at any time - statistics have shown as much to be true. To remove some of the risks associated with disasters and the data loss they lead to; we recommend that you implement BDR into your business continuity strategies.

BDR (or backup and disaster recovery) won’t necessarily prevent any disasters, mind you. What it will do is help prevent any disasters that do strike from halting your operations indefinitely. The fundamentals of a successful BDR include the following:

● Your data is saved in a minimum of three places: the original copy on your network infrastructure, along with additional copies in an on-premises backup and a cloud-based backup.

● Backups are automatically updated in increments throughout the day, not just after the day ends.

● Your cloud backup can take over for your on-site infrastructure, enabling you to continue operations if your local solutions were to fail.

This provides your business with some significant benefits.

Reliability and Flexibility

With data being so particularly critical to a business’ success, it is important to keep it protected against all kinds of situations. With the BDR solution, data will be kept safe—and with the BDR also capable of acting as a server for you, downtime can be mitigated.

Simplicity

The whole point of the BDR is to keep your business’ data safe in case of disaster, so it only makes sense to keep this process as simple as possible. In exchange for a predictable monthly fee, your data remains protected and accessible to you even if something were to happen to your original copy. Restoring your data from the BDR is also a very simple process, whether it is stored in the cloud or your on-site backup.

Cost Efficacy

Finally—and arguably, most importantly—maintaining a BDR is one of the most effective means of controlling your investments. Because BDR is billed as a service, it is considered an operational expense and requires no additional investments into the hardware and software required.

Interested in finding out more about BDR and other means of protecting your business’ data? Give us a call at 334-834-7660 today.

 

A Solid Disaster Recovery Strategy Can Save Your Business

Not all businesses will look at disaster recovery the same way, but if you want your business to have the kind of continuity that will allow it to get through tough situations, doing your best to formally create a disaster recovery policy will put you in the position to weather any storm you encounter.

A Brief Explanation of Disaster Recovery

Every business has some type of business continuity plan, and if they don’t, they should. It outlines the actions that need to be taken to ensure that your business isn’t mortally affected by negative situations. Within this plan is disaster recovery, which is a specific plan to get your operations up and running after a “disaster”. Here are a few examples of disasters that could affect your business’ continuity:

Natural disaster - Flood, hurricane, tornado, wildfire, electrical storm, worldwide pandemic; the list goes on and on. 

Human error - Accidental, negligent, or deliberate situation an employee puts the business in which causes a disaster-like result.

Cyberattack - Data breaches can be some of the worst, especially when people’s sensitive information is involved. 

Failing Hardware - If the right component goes out at the right time it can have devastating effects on your business. 

No matter what problems your business has to deal with, getting your resources back up and running as fast as possible should be one of the core priorities of any negative situation. The reality of the situation is that every minute your business breaks continuity is a massive problem, and can lead to some very unpleasant results. 

The Importance of DR

The first thing you need to know about your disaster recovery policy, is that it has to be created with the notion that it’s a matter of when, not if, you will need to use it. The statistics reinforce this idea. Three-out-of-five businesses that experience a prolonged system outage will be out of business within two years of the event. So, even if you are able to get back up and running again, the lost revenue may eventually catch up and ruin your business.

With that knowledge, the first suggestion we’d make is to stay calm. A business owner—who has toiled and taken his/her business from a one or two-man operation to an organization that people and their families depend on—needs to make calculated decisions to get their business back up and running properly. Acting impulsively will often lead to making decisions that will further hurt your business’ chances of returning to normalcy.

The first real action that needs to be undertaken is to contact the people that will need to know that a disaster has occurred. Setting up a call list to notify people that need to know is a good practice. Since the focus has to be on getting data accessible, once department managers are notified, they can decide how and when to notify their subordinates. Regardless of how you plan to set this up, communication will be key to get your business back up and on track. 

One of the most important parts of a disaster recovery strategy is to have digital copies of everything. We suggest using a Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) service that backs up data incrementally and saves multiple copies of data in a network-connected device, as well as in an offsite data center. Having a comprehensive backup is a core strategy of any disaster recovery platform. 

Depending on the disaster, you may need to find alternative means of managing your workforce. Being able to provide your staff with that ability in the face of a disaster is extremely useful to keep revenue flowing in. You may not be a fan of remote working, but when disaster strikes it may be your only outlet; and, you may be surprised just how productive your workers will be from outside the office.  

The end result will be systems up and running, your data and applications able to be accessed by remote workers, and your business’ data intact. Outside of this, your business continuity policy will handle the rest. DR is about getting your business’ assets up and running in the face of a disaster, whether that is a deleted file or a worldwide pandemic.

If you would like to talk to one of our IT professionals about your disaster recovery policy, call us today at 334-834-7660.

 

The Basics of Business Continuity Planning

Situations happen all the time to businesses that can really put a lot of stress on their ability to sustain operations. These situations don’t often remediate themselves. Simply put, every business needs a business continuity plan; and one-in-five don’t have one. This month, we thought we would break down a successful plan into its components to try to give businesses that may not have a plan, the basics needed to establish one.

Variables of a Successful Continuity Plan

Threat Identification/Remediation

Using what is called a threat matrix, you should work to Identify all the threats that could railroad your business. You will want to include any situation that could cause your business to stop. Examples can be as simple as a power outage to major calamities like a tornado ripping your building apart. Your business’ threat matrix should list threats (from most to least likely) and what your response would be to each. 

Mission-Critical Processes

Each business has mission-critical processes that need to be working fluidly in order to do business as usual. These should all be found in a comprehensive continuity plan. 

Chain of Command

Every business has a leader, management, and subordinates. Knowing who oversees what is crucial when looking to get your business back up and running after an event that knocks continuity out. 

Evacuation Plan for Employee Safety

Your business’ continuity plan should outline a strategy to safely get your people out of harm’s way should some disaster strike your business.  

Communication Hierarchy

If continuity is broken, people need to know about it. There should be a point of contact for every department on your staff, so that they can contact employees, vendors, and customers if the need arises.  

Disaster Recovery

Clearly, you’ll need your data if you want your business to continue after an event. Having a disaster recovery plan that includes comprehensive data backup is a major part of getting your technology up and running, should something happen to your business’ information systems.  

Inventory of Your IT Infrastructure

Concordantly, if a situation arises where your IT is knocked out, having an inventory of everything that you have can also be used to procure resources should you need to rebuild.

When Is It Over?

You will want to have a process in place that signals the end of an incident, and that all “I”s are dotted and “T”s are crossed. This will allow managers and employees to know that they can get back to business without worrying about residual negative circumstances.

There are no guarantees that the breach of your business’ continuity will have a happy ending. What is true is that with a dedicated plan in place, you will have a fighting chance. If you need help putting together the technology resources to support your disaster recovery initiatives, or if you would just like to discuss business continuity with one of our experts, give us a call at 334-834-7660.