When it comes to disaster-proofing your data, there are a multitude of misconceptions. Here are nine of them you need to be aware of.
1. Assessments Aren’t Efficient
First of all, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. How will you know what items you can recover if you don’t have any goals in mind? It is extremely important to determine the hardware and software critical to your business operations. If your business ever experienced a natural disaster, how will you continue to service clients? Furthermore, how much money can you stand to lose if you don’t have a back up plan in place?
2. You Don’t Need a Set Recovery Time
Consider the costs you would incur if your business was down 24 hours, 48 hours and so forth. How much could you afford to burn in that process? There are different options for data recovery from tape backup, being the least expensive to cloud recovery being the most expensive.
There is also a difference in recovery time where tape backup might take days, and cloud backup could have you running again in hours. What are you willing to spend to keep your downtime as minimal as possible? Not to mention, how would your clients feel if you incurred a long-standing blackout? If you have made significant investments in your company’s business tools, you also want to match that investment with protection.
3. You Can Find a Partner When You Really Need One
Think of your current form of employment and say you lost your job and income. Would you wait until you were on your last gritty dollar to look for other means of income? Probably not. Why not? Because there is no guarantee you would find something that day, and if you don’t, the consequences could range from heartbreaking homelessness or worse.
So that also rings true for finding a disaster and recovery partner. Will you wait until your building is on fire to hire a partner? If you reach that point, you will not have the luxury of choice. You would have to select whoever is available. So, as a precaution, it would behoove you to choose someone before anything disastrous happens. That way, you have the time to select the best fit for you.
4. As Long As You Have a Plan, It Doesn’t Need Testing
How will you know your plan works if you don’t throw it in the growling lion’s den? Otherwise, they are nothing more than a bunch of notes that don’t mean anything besides having good intentions. You do know what they say about good intentions, don’t you?
Try to conceptualize any threat to your business from a natural disaster to a burglary, human error or device and software misfire. Figure out how you would respond to each. The ideas behind it are similar to performing a fire drill. Put your plan in place, and then perform tests to mete out any weak points. You can never feel too prepared for an ill-timed and unforeseen circumstance.
5. Encryption is Not Necessary
You’ve heard about the Target debacle, haven’t you? Imagine that as the holidays were approaching, customers flocked to shop at Target without ever questioning the security of their transactions. Then, all of a sudden, it was discovered that Target’s data was breached, and millions of customer credit/debit card information was stolen.
Now, Target is an international retailer that might eventually recover from their reputation loss, but if that ever happened to your company, could you withstand the impact? Not to mention to importance of meeting certain regulatory restrictions. So, encryption is a must with or without a plan to disaster-proof your data.
6. Taking Snapshots is Redundant
There is nothing redundant about playing it safe. Picture a hacker sending a command to override your data, without your knowledge. How could you pinpoint the changes without a snapshot? The modification could be so miniscule that it slips right past you and your IT team. At least not until it is too late. So, in addition to regular backups, snapshots should be imperative for disaster-proofing.
7. Critical Applications Can Be Recovered Quickly Enough
That may or may not be true. If your systems were breached, how would your company move forward without its CRM system or POS software or logistics software? Think of the applications you need up and running on a daily basis. For this reason, you should have a replicated version of your critical applications available in the cloud. That way, if you company is in the process of recovery, you can still perform your daily tasks.
8. Laptops Aren’t As Important
The benefit of laptops is their convenience and power, giving you the opportunity to work from anywhere. The downside is if there are loopholes in your security, sensitive information can be viewed from yours and your employees laptops. While they can be hacked, many times breaches occur as a result of laptop theft. In fact, laptop theft is one of the most common crimes in the corporate world. Here are a few ways to protect your laptops:
- Use a physical lock.
- Backup the data.
- Install tracking software.
- Use an inconspicuous case.
- Purchase insurance.
- Don’t store passwords.
- Engrave your name or your company name on the device (this decreases its resale value).
9. One Test is Sufficient
If you were to give a public speech, would it be enough to practice once? Would you have the ability to recall your lines when faced with an audience of strangers? You would probably practice multiple times daily until you were able to do most of it by memory, perhaps with the assistance of a few prompts.
There is a similar case for disaster-proofing. You want to test once and then test again. Perform random tests to ensure that all of your information can withstand various environments and situations. Ask your team to test you to see whether or not you’re ready. With each test, you figure out where improvements can be made. Also, you feel more confident about the overall process.
There isn’t anything such as 100% protection, but you can still have peace of mind knowing you have done everything you can. So, tell us, have you got a disaster-proofing strategy in place? Let us know in the comments section below!