How IT Services Play an Influential Role in Legal Industry?

To handle complicated cases effectively, law firms do not leave any stone unturned. In order to meet promised deadlines, lawyers select all types of operations and applications for assistance. In other words, they are badly in need of service providers to run their law firms smoothly. Law firms have important data (case updates, record of communication with clients) to deal with. Loss of these important files is great disaster for a law firm. You can cope with the situation when right back up plan is selected for disaster recovery.

If you run an IT company trying to add a law firm as one of your clients, here are some guidelines to follow:

Law Firms Depend on Applications
It is absurd to think that only Internet connection and hardware support is enough to run your business. Law firms must know the type of applications — such as case management applications — necessary for their business. They need to select cloud backup program to backup valuable applications and files.

Law Firms Need to Get IT Experts Support
As a professional service, a law firm must need to differentiate its services. If your services are not prominent, you cannot go beyond certain limits. Solicitors are required to receive education credits to demonstrate legal IT trend; however, all courses need to be approved by governing bodies or bar associations.

Influential Policy is your Legal Responsibility
What are the liability policies of your business? Discuss these liabilities with an expert insurance provider. In case, something disastrous occurs, you must have policies to support your clients. In case, your clients suffers a loss due to catastrophe, they claim that your company did not perform what was necessary for disaster recovery. By using cloud backup service, law firms can handle liability issues and manage continuous workflow.

Show References Proudly
To get prominent position, show your references and some interesting clients stories on web page. By publishing your clients’ list, you are definitely exposing your clients to competitors. Your competitors will try to poach your clients; and if they are successful in poaching your clients, chances are they have done a better job than you, and you probably deserve to lose the account.

Legal Sector is Closely Integrated Industry
Lawyers are closely integrated, well connected with each other, and others in the community. They can recommend a good service to other lawyers. If, especially, a law firm is satisfied with a cloud service that they subscribe to, they won’t hesitate from endorsing them. This will lead to many referential clients.

Legal Sector as Controversial Group
Lawyers are responsible people who work to meet deadlines, which are — in most cases — firm deadlines. As such, lawyers work could influence lives, productivity and continuity of a business. In case, one of your servers is not responding and you do not have a disaster recovery plan, get ready for a harsh reaction.

Understand the Importance of Technology
Lawyers depend on legal administrators for running their business smoothly. Whenever an advanced technology is launched, they compare the prices to decide whether to invest on that technology. It is job of the cloud services provider to inform them about severity of potential loss when disaster recovery solutions are not implemented. It is highly beneficial for law firms to use IT technology and provide distinctive and manageable services to their clients.

Tips For Effective Backup & Recovery Testing

When a server cannot work properly due to hard drive failure, companies call recovery service providers to restore the equipment. Downtime creates problems for companies; therefore, they want to get an immediate support. If you are unable to find an appropriate way to handle downtime, the end users’ anger will mount and their trust on your capabilities will erode. There is something more important than simple backup and disaster recovery plan to stop such frustrating situations. In other words, take your time and test your ability to recover your data before you face your clients’ wrath. For an effective cloud backup as well as recovery testing, you must know the answer to all of the relevant questions. These questions help you in getting valid information for testing your strategy.

What are the Reasons to Test?
When a service provider signs an agreement with its client, on time services is considered crucial part of the agreement. To achieve RTOs, it is necessary to perform some testing. Through testing, you will get information on how fast you can recover. When processes related to recovery are already practiced, you do not feel any difficulty while executing them in real time environment. Moreover, testing develops confidence in clients, as they get surety you will recover easily.

What are the Required Equipments and Processes to Test?
Test cloud backup and local backup plan thoroughly. However, it is far from the possibility realm to do everything within a day. You must think about essential equipments that are suitable for this infrastructure. It is a fact, each failure is dissimilar to the other. You must have some priorities while selecting equipments to test.

How to Test?
Check whether it is possible to view functions of backup image through recovery of folder and file, or change the backup into virtual machine to confirm whether it will boot up to function just like actual VM. Procedure of testing is directly proportional to selection of equipment.

Who is Accountable for Recovery Plan and Backup Testing
A well managed cloud backup company will assign one of their employees to check who, when, why, and what of testing; as it is simple to find which clients have been ignored. Do not overlook any client; and make sure all equipments are tested systematically.

When Plan was Tested & When Will Tested in Future?
Getting into detail of disaster recovery plan needs to verify maintenance records and designing spreadsheet to check what, how and when was tested, who had tested and what were the end results. Keeping information of testing record and maintenance process is highly important; therefore, prepare documents cautiously concerning what is tested and what will be the strategy to test in the future.

Do not Procrastinate
Keep in mind that testing your backups should never be done at the time when a disaster strikes. Rather, it should be planned and tested well in advance, preferably as soon as a client signs up, and also periodically there after. The more you have know-how of recovery procedures and environment, the better you will be prepared to assist clients avoid downtime. It should be the foremost preference of a confident service provider to test cloud back and all recovery plans to know about recovery in detail.

How Compliance Affects on Data Protection Strategies?

An organisation that is using data archiving software should give value to result oriented practises while designing policies for data archiving. No doubt, compliance plays an important role when policies are formed. It is the requirement that forces to conform to the rules and regulations. However, the rules and regulations may depend on the nature of business:

– In Specification or Standards — when a particular standard is adhered to, like Payment Card Industry (PCI) or International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) protection standards;

– In Regulatory — when the need is linked with specific type of compliance, such as HIPAA or Sarbanes-Oxley;

– In Legal — when the need is linked with specific data for investigation purposes or e-discovery.

Financial or medical industries are regulated more specifically than a small franchise in other service areas, which for instance, needs to follow PCI standards. However, such a franchise — or any business for that matter — must have some policies in place for legal and e-discovery.

Three basic considerations must be defined in order to determine how certain data should be archived and/or when the data should expire:

– Type of data – how important that data is for the organisation;

– Time period required for data protection – how long should the data be kept active;

– When archived data should be deleted.

In fact, compliance is the basis of data storage. Archives contain only a few relevant files for BDR. It is ridiculous to save short-term records as drafts or logs. If you have decided on what type of data is needed to be backed up, the next task is to check the required time period for keeping the protected data. For instance, IRS demands to keep documents related to tax protected for at least 7 years.

When a specific data is no more needed, it is time to remove the archived data. Most do not even bother to delete data as cloud backup is cheaper and is simpler solution for maximum data protection. Due to business continuity and compliance management, data is considered as valuable commodity. Data can be stolen to damage the reputation of a company; therefore, companies must keep backup of all files and documents, whether needed or not. This is one of the reasons why businesses have huge bulk of data stored in the cloud.

Though holding valuable data as backup helps during recovery process, but keeping expired data might cause many legal problems for companies. Federal regulations demand specific type of data to be retained if a company is charged for any wrong doing. Litigation experts claim that keeping unnecessary data beyond the required date may cause more problems for companies. More resources will be required to sift through the data. Furthermore, more data means, more chances of vulnerability. Companies must design and follow a policy for destruction of irrelevant data to avoid legal consequences.

Current legislation that demands proper procedures, as well as policies, also needs to have formal record of all data destruction and retention policies. Moreover, such policies are used as record to court that certain data no longer exist.
It is time to think about compliance as no organisation even desires to be charged for not following the law. When right compliance kit and compliance management is selected, companies can avoid legal issues.

Cloud Computing: Data Protection in Healthcare Industry

Whenever news about data breach or failure of cloud system is on the media, it seems as if cloud is not a reliable source of data protection. In fact, all clouds are not created equal; they come with different purposes. There are certain clouds which are developed to cover sensitive information. Companies cannot avoid the cloud. Keep in mind that each cloud is designed for specific purpose; so it is in your interest to find the right cloud solution for the right function.


HIPAA Compliance

Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is basically a chain of codes that controls the design, transmission and right to use electronic protected health information (ePHI). In other words, HIPAA protects sensitive health information of patients. Health care providers require a secure system for HIPAA compliance.  To fulfil such demands, cloud is one of the best and quickest ways.


If you are IT provider, you must know two significant factors before serving healthcare industry’s clients:


1/ Protection and Right of Access

It is true replicating of data and transferring to the cloud is quite an easy job. What matters a lot is the level of security. What is the kind of safety provided to customers to protect offsite data? Keep in mind that entities which are covered require access to facilities and information systems. Make certain that data is encrypted all the time, in flight and at rest. Remember that all service providers do not provide such encryption feature. If it is your objective to secure ePHI, choose the right cloud service provider. Healthcare industry needs to select service providers that have capability to encrypt data whether it is in transit, onsite or at data centre location. Physical access to the system is another notable factor to consider. Selected data centre should provide digital and physical safeguards to avoid unauthorized access.


2/ System for Backup and Disaster Recovery

It is confirmed through CFR 164.308 that disaster recovery as well as backup plans are basic requirements of Covered Entities. Cloud gives long lasting benefit to companies as offsite backup is easy to recover if onsite backup data can not be recovered. Many clouds are developed to make recovery process fast and easy which is important for HIPAA compliance. Covered Entities are required to work in emergency conditions and have data backup for immediate recovery. Clouds which are developed to handle all these issues are ideal for IT providers.


No doubt, the cloud is dependable way to handle some aspects of HIPAA; however, it does not cover all aspects. For some IT providers, HIPAA is nothing more than a mess. However, the fact is, HIPAA is based on rules to provide highest level of security standards.


Any system working through private or public cloud can suffer a disaster at any time. Cloud service providers must use a meticulous approach for data protection by making use of technologies, such as malware protection tools, and encryption systems. The healthcare industry must have local disaster recovery and offsite data recovery plans for HIPAA compliance.


Facts about RAID & Strategies for Data Protection

Redundant array of independent disks (RAID) stores data on multiple hard disks to improve performance. It is considered that RAID is one of the best solutions available for protection of valuable data. For software or hardware implementation, RAID supports single disk failure; however RAID is not perfect system for ongoing data security.


RAID level 1 works in a systematic way where two disks are available for storing similar data. In case, one disk fails, clients can use data from another disk. Drawback of RAID is that it cannot verify the corrupted disk thus unable to inform the system. If failure is not noticed, system will keep on working and copying data from the corrupted drive to the good drive. As a result, more problems are created due to this shortcoming of RAID. In IT environment, data security is obligatory for business continuity. Disaster can occur anytime due to man-made or machine or human errors. Some of the reasons are as follows:

  • Power outages
  • Improper shutdown
  • Virus infection
  • System freezes
  • Bad disk sectors
  • Hard drive failure
  • Improper eject before disconnecting storage devices


RAID Levels

RAID is available in various formats. When higher level is selected, it gives more satisfactory results than the previous levels. As compared to other levels, RAID 5 is acknowledged for reliable swapping and great performance. By using RAID 5, companies can take out corrupted arrays from NAS devices and servers anytime without switching off the system. RAID 6 has twofold parity structural design, which can cover data even if two disk drives are corrupted. In spite of parity features, RAID cannot be considered a perfect system for data protection.


Strategies for System Protection

If it is your priority to select RAID, you need to protect your system by following these strategies:


Apply Disconnection and Shutdown Procedure

Give training to workers how to disconnect storage devices and shutdown the system properly. They must know that not following this procedure could lead to data corruption.


UPS System

To cope with issues such as brownouts, surges and power outages, you must have an Uniterruptible Power Supply (UPS) that can work without any outage. In case electrical source is not available, UPS works as backup system for data protection.


Handle Issues Immediately

If there are problems in your system, restarting the system does not necessarily solve the issues. Instead, troubleshoot to determine the actual problems and solve the issues instantly.


Safe Surfing

Online world has malicious stuff which can affect the performance of your system. If you do not follow safe surfing strategy, malevolent websites could corrupt your data.


BDR Strategy

Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) planning gives surety of data protection even if hard disk fails. System without backup and recovery plan is always at risk.

RAID Recovery Solution

If your organization suffers because of corrupted data, there are chances to recover lost data by repairing the damaged disks. RAID recovery software rebuilds damaged arrays in configurations, software and hardware. For data security, companies can get data recovery software in commercial, as well as free versions. Perform the proper research and search online to select the right software for resurrecting the damaged data.

Fundamentals for Managed Business Continuity & Disaster Recovery Services

Many companies are facing problems due to unsatisfactory data recovery plans. Some of them are not paying attention to key points; whereas others do not have relevant strategies. For companies, it is highly important to have appropriate backup and recovery system. For this purpose, they search for reliable services which give surety of business continuity, even if disaster strikes. It is often assumed that plan for disaster recovery (DR) is similar to business continuity (BC). In fact, plan for DR covers IT operations and infrastructure, whereas BC plan covers entire organization.


There are some fundamentals which DR Service providers must consider. The following five fundamentals give guideline to develop a well executed DR and BC:


1/ White Glove Service

It is the responsibility of the service provider to arrange disaster recovery plan, handle accomplishment, make schedule for backups and provide testing facility. White glove service works to improve recovery plan to support business resiliency. As a result, clients get enough time for other business concerning tasks.


2/ Undisturbed Deployment

There are many companies that do not have proper system for recovering data. In traditional Information Technology, it is a bit challenging to plan, implement or administer projects that need money for investment, time and staff. Only a managed solution can give instant and reliable results. Service providers must have straightforward unending management with automated procedures to update the recovery of applications and data system.


3/ Clients’ Control over DR Plan

Only a managed service provider gives some control to clients over DR operations. For this purpose, clients are given relevant tools to test disaster recovery plan, system backup and folders and files recovery processes. Though white glove treatment is provided, clients must have enough knowledge to carry on simple recovery operations. Clients’ know how of recovery operation is critical if you are pressed with RPO and RTO.


4/ Proper Tools for Smooth Integration

For managed disaster recovery, clients must be empowered with relevant tools. White gloves services supply tools that can simplify the managerial aspects and help in seamless consolidation of IT environment of the company while integrating personnel, processes and tools that are already available.


5/ Affordable Solution

When companies get DR management service for business continuity, they need vendors that are within their budget. Vendors are providing solutions for business continuity that most of companies cannot afford. Service providers can make disaster recovery plan affordable, as well as beneficial for clients by offering cloud computing services. One of the advantages of the cloud is that companies are able to scale up or scale down depending on the resources needed while only paying for the resources they have used.


Disaster Recovery as a Service is the dominating segment of DR market. By 2018, MarketsandMarkets projects that the DRaaS segment will reach the $5.7 Billion figure. Therefore, IT providers are given an opportunity to get maximum profit in the coming years. If you are an IT company planning to get a slice of the DRaaS market, please contact us and we will assist you in reaching your goals.

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