It’s not a matter of if but when your business will face the disastrous consequences of a natural or human-caused disaster. And without a robust backup and disaster recovery plan (BDR) in place, you’ll likely be one of the 40 to 60 percent of small businesses that never reopen following a catastrophe.
Even if your business operates solely online, protecting company and client information is critical.
“In no previous decade has data been as integral to business success as it is now. With most organizations engaged in various digital transformation initiatives, data has never been more abundant — or more crucial.” —Forbes
The question, then, is this: How can you implement a BDR plan that actually safeguards your data and gets your business out of hot water when disaster strikes? Here is our advice.
Identify the risks facing your business
You cannot create an effective backup and disaster recovery plan if you do not have a comprehensive understanding of the risks facing your business’s capacity to operate. Common threats include:
- Natural disasters, such as fire, flood, and global pandemics
- Internal threats, such as human error or malicious employee action
- External threats, such as cybercriminals and malware
- Other risks, such as failing hardware and extended power outages
Consider where your business is located — are you particularly vulnerable to a certain kind of weather event? Think about where your most critical information is stored — is it on the cloud or housed on-premises?
Once you have determined your key threats, you can prepare for the worst-case scenario.
Create a disaster recovery team
Even the best-laid backup and disaster recovery plan can be rendered useless if no one knows their roles and responsibilities at go-time.
When disaster strikes, it’s vital that everyone understands what to do, who to follow, and where to seek guidance. After appointing a team, be sure they know how to assess the impact of a disaster and how to action the BDR plan to get things back up and running as soon as possible.
Evaluate your backups
Your backup and disaster recovery plan encompass how, when, and where you back up your data. Ideally, you should back up your data routinely, every 24 hours or so. You should also take this opportunity to evaluate precisely where mission-critical information is stored — on which device and in which folder.
Finally, ensure everyone in your BDR plan team knows how to recover data from backups in the event of an emergency.
Bring clarity to disaster recovery procedures
Backups are important but implementing the right disaster recovery procedures is vital if your business is to survive.
First, single out the top-priority measures. What should be done right away to limit the amount of damage caused by the incident? This might depend on the type and severity of the circumstances.
And second, how can you mitigate any further risk? Prevention is essential. Defenses like managing multiple backups on both physical hard drives and in the cloud can mean the difference between business as usual and total ruin.
Make protecting your data a top priority
It’s scary stuff thinking about just how lost you’d be without your data. If you haven’t already, now’s the time to put protecting one of your business’s most valuable assets at the top of your to-do list. Get in touch with the team at Square3 to learn more about our backup and disaster recovery plan services.