Computer breakdowns, viruses, or office accidents often result in the loss of valuable information, without which organizations often cannot continue their business. Common examples are agencies and similar businesses that dispose of their clients’ data, which, without paying attention to security, lose data and cause discomfort to themselves and their clients.
The Importance of Keeping Data
We’ve all heard the stories of some fatal data loss. The reasons for the loss of information can be various – a broken computer, hard drive, server, power outages, power problems, all the way to inclement weather. And everyone who had the experience of losing important data subsequently realized the importance of keeping it safe.
Cloud As A Modern Way Of Storing Data
Formerly, using backup via an external hard drive was the most common feature used to store data. With the development of technology, things are a little bit different. Today, information is increasingly being stored through cloud platforms.
Today, we have advanced solutions and services available for companies that are looking to digitize, upgrade and optimize their IT infrastructure and elevate their business to a higher level.
Make A Recovery Plan
Responsible business involves prevention as a strategic approach, especially when it comes to keeping company data relevant. Investing in a reliable IT infrastructure reduces the possibility of compromising its security. However, no IT infrastructure is 100% protected from potential disasters.
It’s pretty clear that you can hardly predict a disaster. What you can do is think ahead and create a detailed disaster recovery plan. This way you will be in a position to return to the normal pace of business as soon as possible and with minimal losses. But to get to the disaster recovery plan, you need to follow the 6 steps.
Step 1: List All The IT Assets You Own And Perform A Risk Estimation
A logical start for developing a disaster recovery plan involves listing and analyzing important material that is critical to your business. It also refers to the listing the hardware and systems your business owns and manages. This way you can clearly define the elements of your IT environment and determine what IT management is responsible for. Common IT assets include:
- Different types of applications and programs
- Information such as business partner contacts, customer and users confidential information
- Network devices and access points
- Specific data storage equipment and devices, etc.
It is advisable to list all the elements, their physical location, which network they belong to, and how they depend on other elements. Try to keep this list as comprehensive as possible.
The list is followed by a risk assessment. List the potential threats and risks for each of the elements that you have included in your spreadsheet. Your IT team or security coordinator should define three things:
- What threats are realistic for each element of the infrastructure
- How likely a particular disaster is to actually occur
- What are the possible degrees of damage that certain disasters can cause
After listing the elements of your entire IT infrastructure and risk assessment, you are ready for step two.
Step 2: Organize Your Business Data By The Importance Factor
The main role of a recovery plan is to enable you to systematically get your company back on its feet in case of such a loss, with the least possible downtime. Therefore, you must make a professional classification, that is, to define which elements are of paramount importance to your entire business. Depending on what your company does, data can play a more or less important role in the post-disaster crisis management process.
For example, if you are a disaster-stricken e-commerce company with thousands of orders placed, the crucial data would be business information referring customers who made payments, as well as accurate information about when the payment was made, which is the expected delivery time, etc.
Step 3: Make A Budget And Choose The Right Allies
As expected, the risk assessment is followed by an estimate of the cost of repairing the potential damage. Forming a budget within a recovery plan takes some time, but it is necessary to manage the company in a crisis as efficiently as possible.
Nowadays, cloud services are gaining prominence in the context of prevention and designing an effective and affordable recovery plan. By using the cloud platform, information is stored offsite from where it can be safely retrieved in case of a loss. However, there are still companies that do not rely on this form of data storage, considering that the cloud platform is not secure enough for some of the top confidential material that must be stored.
According to the Data Sector, many companies and private users still store certain data on a hard drive, SSD, or external variants such as USB, etc. But what if there is a malfunction or situation on these devices that could endanger your further business?
Then you need a reliable partner – a company that is successful and experienced in data recovery, and that you can give your trust to.
Step 4: Define The Recovery Period And Point
When designing a recovery plan, it is necessary to define the recovery period and point.
Recovery period means a predefined maximum time for the implementation of a recovery plan. Of course, this is a tentative assessment, but it should not come down to plain guessing. You must also assess the losses that are very dangerous – so much so that they threaten the existence of the business.
The point of recovery refers to an acceptable amount of information that a company can lose without seriously disrupting the pace of the business. The frequency of the backup depends on this defined value to store all the key information.
If the company suffers a severe system crash, the recovery point allows you to restore the data stored as part of your most recent backup. It also defines the age of the files to be recovered.
Step 5: Document, Test And Evaluate Your Plan
The last step involves documenting your recovery plan as well as testing it. This is followed by an evaluation and revisions of what you have recorded. Try to test your plan through employee training.
This will provide you with an excellent level of teamwork and you’ll also be able to identify the weaknesses of your plan and therefore refine it. Also, your business will change over time, as will the IT assets you use. Therefore, plan evaluation is best played through practice.