As business leaders who have been around for more than a decade have probably noticed already, the best practices of disaster recovery and continuity have evolved significantly as time has gone on. In the late 2000s, virtually every recommendation to small business owners, specifically, was to ensure that data was backed up, located in at least two locations at any given time to mitigate the threat of loss from natural and man-made disasters.
Now, the story is a bit more complex, with network virtualization, infrastructure fortifications, strategic adjustments and even more intense data loss prevention demands all becoming common requirements of organizations across the country. In continuity, nothing beats comprehension, as an exhaustive strategy that covers all bases in one fell swoop will tend to have the strongest success rates thanks to minimized vulnerability and proactively mitigated risks.
Data's wide-reaching requirements
Data backup appears to be thoroughly understood by the nation's public and private sectors, especially as more entities begin to migrate their filing systems into virtualized and cloud-based environments. However, other components within IT will have a direct impact on the accessibility and integrity of data when a disaster strikes, including infrastructure, platforms, software and devices.
The National Institute of Standards and Technology has pointed out that the architecture involved in general IT frameworks, as well as disaster recovery plans themselves, should be a major focus of leaders working on these strategies. According to the agency, more elastic and basic iterations of architecture will tend to be the most easily defended against loss and disruption, so while being thorough is not an option, companies ought to focus on simplifying these frameworks as much as possible.
Network fortifications, as well as server and device protection, will also need to be optimized to give the firm 360-degrees of defense against outages, disruptions and loss should an event sprout up unexpectedly. By leveraging the right solutions to backup the plans, businesses can then focus on the more strategic aspects of comprehensive data protection that transcends simple avoidance of loss or misplacement.
Continuity plans are not only defined by a firm's resistance to pure data loss or outages. Instead, it should account for all of the threats to systems, information, users and assets.
Here are the three categories that must be touched upon in plans to complement backups for loss prevention:
- Security: Protecting against data breaches can certainly be viewed as a continuity-related matter, as one major event can cause the company to close its doors forever.
- Compliance: Failing to meet the requirements of any and all regulatory statutes the business falls under by way of IT and data management can threaten continuity as well.
- Accessibility: What good will data be when users cannot access it? The channels and devices used to access information should be protected against disruption.
By being as exhaustive and thorough as possible in these strategies, small businesses can ensure stronger resilience against disasters and disruptions in the future.