Backup and Disaster Recovery,
Every business no matter what the size should at least invest in some sort of technology to back up their business critical data.
Backup services are provided in many different ways even through the cloud, or built into most operating systems now days. However it is the disaster recovery (DR) plan that makes the backup solution that you use extremely important and most small businesses don’t have one. When a failure happens most businesses fail to recover and have tremendous losses in revenue due mostly to loss of non-recoverable data or time it takes to recover.
So what is a DR plan, simply it is the documented actions to be taken when you need to recover from failure and also what data you need to protect in the event of a disaster.
Most businesses DR plan is the knowledge that the backups are running and completing every night. It is not a guarantee that because a backup completes and a green tick is displayed that you can recover it, maybe the data is incorrect may the software is failing and not all data is being backed up you need to have procedures for testing this.
If you were to have a server completely fail i.e. disks crashed complete loss of data, how long is it going to take to restore that server? And when I mean restore I mean do you need to purchase new disks are the disks available how long will they take to receive can you restore to the new disk and will the server/desktop need to be rebuilt from scratch new installation of OS and all the software. You can imagine this scenario could take days even weeks what do you do in the meantime.
- Your DR plan will firstly make the decision for your business on what needs to be done in the event of failure.
- DR Plan should identify the processes that staff should take in the event of a failure to ensure they can still function in their roles.
- DR Plan should identify the levels of failure and what needs to be done to restore at those levels i.e. loss of hardware or deleted files.
- DR Plan needs to be tested regularly for integrity and restore functionality so you know you can recover from failure
- DR Plan should be reviewed for changes on a regular basis.
- DR Plan most importantly should determine the backup solution and software you use to ensure you are protected and most of all able to recover based on business needs.
A small business can benefit tremendously from just going through some basic scenarios and working out what they need to backup and how often it should be backed up.
These are just a few starting points on Backup and Disaster Recovery for you to think about. Remember even if you are a small business with just a laptop you should still think about this and what you are doing to protect yourself.
If you have any questions please ask.