Tag Archives: Business Continuity

Managed Disaster Recovery Fundamentals Are Significant For Business Continuity Vendors

Many companies are facing difficulties due to unsatisfactory disaster recovery solutions. Some companies do not have appropriate strategies, whereas others are missing basic elements to execute recovery plan. Most of the companies are exposed to downtime without having proper strategies.

In order to find out satisfactory solution against downtime, IT vendors need to follow five basic rules:

Stress-free Deployment
When different companies are observed to find out the reason of inadequate disaster recovery plan, major drawback is noticed in the form of complexity. Planning, execution and supervision in an IT environment requires enough investment in staff resources, money, and time. These resources are a luxury for many. For business continuity, it is required to have managed solution to make recovery plan simple and trouble-free. Service providers must keep current management very simple, with automated processes that can make data recovery more effective when disaster occurs.

Full Service
It is the responsibility of the service providers to manage each and everything. They are liable to provide disaster recovery plan, schedule backups, handle execution, and guide testing. Vendors have all loads on their shoulders to improve DR plan and business continuity. Such a full service is also known as “White Glove Service”. As a result, clients can get time to pay attention on other business objectives.

Powerful Integration with Present Infrastructure
For managed disaster recovery system, clients must be empowered with correct tools. Though it is the responsibility of MSPs to take the burden, organization must be supported with the right tools so that clients can make the management aspects simpler. These tools have capability to change the company’s IT environment.

Access & Control System for Clients
Managed disaster recovery is concerned to be a very delicate task. It is the responsibility of the MSP to offer a fully compact managed service and at the same time allow its clients to have some power over the disaster recovery process. In this regard, clients are given access to certain tools to check out DR plan, recover files and folders. Even if a white glove service is selected, clients may require expertise and the ability to carry out recovery options by themselves when, especially, in emergency situations.

Cost Efficient Disaster Recovery Solution
To lessen the burden of disaster recovery management, companies need to pay an amount on regular basis. DR solution should be priced in range of target market. For MSPs, selling a solution means to make it affordable for customers to maintain business continuity. MSPs should provide reasonably priced solutions and at the same time stay profitable. This can be achieved with the help of cloud computing. Through the cloud, companies are able to scale up or down resources as needed, allowing payment for only what they actually have used.

In disaster recovery market, DRaaS is a rapidly developing segment. Researchers have reported that the DRaaS market will be more than $5.7 Billion USD by 2018. This is a very encouraging news, and MSPs should try their best to get the piece of the action from this market.

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.

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.

Online Backup for Recovering Data

Internet based cloud backup has become the topic of discussion as companies are concerned to keep important information safe from cyber criminals. The target of hijackers is not only to trace out Credit Card numbers. In fact, data breaching has covered email addresses, purchase data, registration numbers, and birth dates. By using such details, cyber criminals are able to make profiles of individual customers for black mailing and/or black marketing.

Famous and less known companies are always in danger of data breaches. As passwords and security software cannot protect data, companies must search for another method. When system faces problems, encounters security threats or malware, rest be assured that data can be restored in the system and retrieved from online backup repositories.

Change in business analytics and information management have made it possible for companies to have large sets of data and get more advantages from this information. Whether it is social media’s incoming data or companies’ private information, various ways are adopted to manage and protect data. In this regard, data backup is preferred to minimize the chances of loss or theft.

It does not matter whether your company gets some important files or bulk of data within a day; what is important is the way to protect for effective business continuity. Protection of data becomes problematic when volume increases day by day. As a result, small companies and large enterprises search reliable software for disaster recovery. Common sense dictates that presence of valuable and bulk of data make it essential to use data protection and restoring methods.

Data Backup
All companies must have data backup system implemented for data security and recovery. When effective solutions are selected for data backup, businesses get opportunity to recover data swiftly and reduce the chances of loss as well. Selection of data security solution depends on factors like type of data and its importance. It is essential to check operations and find out whether online backup system or local backup can become more appropriate or not.

Backup Data is Continuous Process
Selection of backup system is not enough for a company. There must be regular program for making backups. Usually small companies get solution in the form of server backup and overlook to update it regularly. Keep in mind, updating of backup is key to have a successful disaster recovery. Data is considered as backbone of a business so loss of data will be catastrophic and affect negatively on company’s progress and bottomline.

Test Backup Data
When companies make schedule for backup, it becomes certain to test data and check whether it is functioning in different scenarios. Whenever a disaster occurs, it is usually different from the last one. For business continuity, it is essential to understand how to respond accordingly in critical situations.

Data Recovery
Eventually, the effectiveness of cloud backup can be tested when some catastrophic situations occur. If your company has worked systematically for backup, scheduling and testing; it becomes easy to apply for disaster recovery. If you are prepared and are ready for uncertain conditions, you will be able to help in recovering data as soon as possible. As a result, businesses can decrease lost productivity, downtime and lost profits by recovering data immediately.

Saving Space and Money with Data De-duplication

Like every disruptive technology, the cloud is hungrily absorbing and assimilating within itself, a number of minor innovations and utilities. Data de-duplication is one such innovation that has been successfully integrated with cloud technologies to deliver value.

Technology experts are quick to point out that data deduplication is not really a technology. It is a methodology. It is software driven process that identifies and removes data duplicates in a given data set. A single copy of the data is retained in the store, while all duplicates of the data are removed and replaced with references to the retained copy. All files that initially contained a copy of the data, now contains a reference to the data item retained in the store. Whenever the file containing the deduplicated data item is called for, an instance of the data will be inserted at the right place and a fully functional file will be generated for the user. This method of compressing data reduces the amount of disk space that is being used for data storage and reduces costs of storage.

The growing importance of de-duplication can be traced to the growing volumes of data being generated by businesses. As businesses continue to generate data, space becomes a major constraint and financial resources may have to be allocated for acquiring larger storage capacities. Consequently, any technology that allows them to “have the cake and eat it too” is welcome!

Data deduplication can be “in-line” or “post process”.

In line data deduplication is a process that de-duplicates data before it is sent to storage server. This saves on bandwidth and time-to-backup, as the amount of data being transmitted over the Internet is reduced and only the “clean” data reaches the storage server. However, the process of de-duplication at the client end of the system is itself a time consuming process and is extremely resource intensive.

Post-process de-duplication removes duplicates from the data that has been uploaded to the storage server. There is neither saving of time or bandwidth during transmission, but there is certainly a saving of processing time and client hardware resources at the point of transmission of data, since all de-duplication processes happen on the cloud vendor’s server. Modern day backup companies use a combination of the two methods for obvious advantages.

Backup Technology have integrated data-de-duplication with its cloud backup and recovery solutions. The all-in-one suites for cloud computing and online backup automatically provide data de-duplication services to the subscribing clients. The software automatically detects and deletes all duplicate data and creates appropriate references to the data during the backup process. This saves time and money and results in faster time to backup and recover. The extensive versioning that is used in tandem adds to the strength of the software as older versions of any backed up file can be recovered — even if it was deleted from the source computer. For these and other similar reasons, we invite you to try our award winning cloud backup and disaster recovery and business continuity services, powered by Asigra. We are confident that you will be completely satisfied with what we have to offer!

Data Backup: Can you Recover your Data after a Disaster?

As data is becoming more critical to businesses, not being able to recover a critical file or database could lead to significant financial losses and have a long lasting damaging impact on the companys reputation. As a direct result of this the data backup market has become more competitive with every data backup provider claiming that they can successfully backup your data on a daily basis and recover it in the event of a disaster.

There are data backup solutions that only backup data locally with the additional option to replicate the data offsite. Other solutions’ primary objective is to get your data offsite into the cloud and have an additional option of keeping local copies for faster restores. Depending on the solution that is utilised, the chance of being able to restore data depends on how robust the solution is and the functionalities of it.

By only keeping a copy of data onsite, the data is put at a much greater risk of being destroyed if a disaster is suffered. What happens if there is a flood or fire at the office and all servers and backup media are destroyed? The data is lost and no-one will be able to recover it. If someone is only keeping an onsite copy of their backups, they should ask themselves what impact this would have on their business financially and company reputation?

If the extra step is taken of paying a company to take copies of backup media offsite on a daily basis or to replicate the onsite backup to a remote site or to the cloud, then the chances of being able to recover that data in the event of a disaster are significantly better. However, there are still potential risks that can result in the data not being recoverable. Backup media such as tapes can be lost during transportation or the backup itself may have been unsuccessful rendering the contents of the media incomplete and unreliable. Also, if data is replicated offsite as an after thought, it is not always easy to know for sure that all the data has been fully replicated offsite. One can then find themselves in a situation where their only reliable backup is that which is onsite. Again, this could lead to significant financial implications and damage to company reputation in the event of a disaster.

Ideally, an incremental forever cloud backup solution should be utilised which has the primary target of getting your data offsite in a secure fashion. By having the ability to back up the incremental changes on a nightly basis after the initial seed, history of critical data can be efficiently accumulated without sending full copies of the entire data set each night. It then comes down to the configuration of the software such as retention and the quality of the system infrastructure that your data is being kept on. This gives you the ability to restore older none corrupt versions of files and restore data even though it had been initially deleted from the main production server. Some backup software gives the provider the ability to conduct bare metal restores so if there was a total disaster at your office, the data could be recovered onto new hardware whilst keeping the same configuration of the old damaged servers.

In the worst instance where all servers are damaged in a disaster it will take time to purchase new hardware and get all of the data recovered. To further minimise downtime the need to purchase new hardware can be eliminated by utilising a Virtual Disaster Recovery solution. Data can be recovered into a virtual environment hosted in the cloud in which users can login and continue work as normal. This solution works even in the worst case scenarios where company office buildings cannot be accessed. However, when utilising such a solution it is vital that regular tests are conducted and a plan of action is put in place so as the ensure Recovery Time Objectives and Recovery Point Objectives are met.

The chances of being able to restore data in the event of a disaster depends on how robust the backup solution is. There are many companies who can back up data, but in the event of a disaster, are you confident that you will be able to recover? Ensuring that you have a data backup solution in place that enables you to recover all of your data successfully and quickly in the event of a disaster of any kind is vital as it will be all too late to think about the consequences afterwards.

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