What is Disaster Recovery and Why it is Important
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What is Disaster Recovery and Why it is Important

When disaster comes to mind, people think of hurricanes and tornadoes. They think catastrophic and life-altering. However, in the IT world, disaster means unforeseen circumstances preventing the continuity of business. Therefore, it can definitely be a hurricane or a pandemic, but it can also mean a cyberattack, hardware failures, human error, or power outages. Each one of these events can greatly affect a business. In other words, it can be disastrous. Therefore, it is crucial for businesses to consider disaster recovery. In this blog, we will discuss its definition and why it is important.

DefiningDisaster Recovery

Disaster recovery is the ability to recover your data after a disaster. Examples include a natural disaster, hardware failures, ransomware, man-made disaster, a power outage, or human error.

Evidently, many companies believe their chances of a disaster are small. However, consider our chances of living through a pandemic – very small. Yet, here we are. A disaster can hit ANY organization, no matter how big or small or what industry you fall under.

Disaster recovery does not only include the ability to recover your data but how much you can recover and how quickly you can get it back up and running. Disaster recovery is responsible for business continuity.

For example, a disaster does not have to be permanent for it to affect your business. A power outage can cut the power and wipe out information from that workday. To ensure your business can retrieve at least some of that work and continue working (business continuity), you need to consider your RTO and RPO.

Here are definitions you need to know:

  • Business continuity: Business continuity is an enterprise’s ability to ensure mission-critical infrastructure, company functions, and operations are not severely or critically impacted by a disaster (logical or physical) or unplanned incident.
  • Recovery Time Objective (RTO) is a time, within which all operations must be back to normal after disaster strikes.
  • Recovery Point Objective (RPO) is a maximum period on which data and operations can be lost between the last backup and the disruptive event. RPO is set by the company requirements and business continuity strategy.

Why Prioritize Disaster Recovery

As data remains the most valuable business asset, it’s shocking that data protection isn’t a priority for all organizations. Many companies only start planning for disasters after they have been hit. By then, it could be too late. Businesses that lose their data shut down within six months. And even if you could survive the disaster, the average downtime costs $66 000.

To reiterate, prioritize disaster recovery to:

  • Protect your data
  • Be prepared for any disaster
  • Be proactive, be ahead of the game
  • Eliminate the chances of your business going bankrupt due to a disaster

Importance of Disaster Recovery

Part of disaster recovery is knowing how to react when a disaster occurs. For example, in the scenario above, the power outage is not the worst disaster to occur, but still requires a business process for business continuity.

In that situation, part of your plan could have been to have a backup generator, have your data backed up off-site, and have an RPO of 15 minutes. This planning is not possible without disaster recovery being a priority.

Other components your company needs to consider before a disaster hits:

  • Number of servers
  • IT infrastructure
  • Equipment to purchase
  • Real Estate to house the equipment
  • Telecommunications
  • Operations Staff
  • Testing time to ensure that your failover equipment and infrastructure time is working as planned

Needless to say, there are many components to consider when taking on disaster recovery in-house. If you are interested in disaster recovery for your business, you can also consider disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS). It is a less expensive alternative that reduces the headaches of managing additional equipment, infrastructure, and testing. Contact Assurance IT to help you with DRaaS today.


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