In an IT context, a disaster is any event that causes sudden damage or incapacitation of a business’s systems.
This could be a data loss via a cyber attack, or temporary outage from a hardware failure. Regardless of size, no business is immune to such events.
A disaster recovery plan (DRP) is a detailed approach a business lays out to prepare for such an event. It includes the tools and the operations needed to recover lost data and resume normal business practices ASAP. It’s essentially a contingency plan. And in the following article we’ll look at the 5 key elements that all effective disaster recovery plans should include.
This should consist of a variety of perspectives over the business’s vulnerabilities. Every organisation is different but typically the following members will feature:
Your team should now get to know your business’s major weak points. This process is often known as a Business Impact Analysis.
Whilst you should aim to protect as much as you can, you should prioritise. Get to know the elements of the business that would cause the most trouble should a disaster strike. How they will impact your business, your revenue streams and your employees. This process should be combined with a risk assessment as well. Think through as many disaster scenarios as possible and evaluate the likelihood of them happening.
This specifically involves two things.
In as much detail as possible outline what will happen in various disaster scenarios. In a nutshell it involves collecting insights and creating a series of action steps in response to them. There are many things to consider here including.
The measures you put in place should fall into one of three categories.
A disaster recovery plan is a waste of time if you run it post catastrophe only to find it doesn’t work. This can be avoided by testing every step in your DRP. Ideally every quarter. This is coupled with regular reviewing.
The nature of your business and the needs of each department are likely to change over time. Are you storing the same levels of data as you were months before? Could there be a new technology on the market that will be better suited to your objectives? Review and redraft your DRP to keep it functional. Both results of the tests you perform and your reviews are likely to contribute to the ever changing document that is your disaster recovery plan.
This is an overview. The full process involves much more than a short read. That said, we have another resource, namely a Disaster Recovery Plan, which may help give you a quick overview of the process. It can also function as a checklist you can use for when you’re carrying out your Disaster Recovery Plan.
For best results it's smart to work with professionals that have performed Disaster Recovery Plans before. Intalex is highly experienced in the field and can help you with every step of the process.
Get in contact to find out more.