November 6th, 2014 by admin
Last month, the Bay Area commemorated the 25th anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake. Those of us who lived through that experience remember the sudden, unexpected jolt — and how the event disrupted our lives for several weeks afterward.
Of course, we were a lot less reliant on technology back in 1989 (remember life without a smartphone?), but we know today how data networks (email and more) are absolutely mission-critical for businesses of all sizes. What happens when your server suddenly becomes inoperative? Your entire organization grinds to a screeching halt.
Planning for Disasters — and Recovery
With so much productivity at stake, small businesses now see the need for IT disaster recovery planning (commonly referred to as DR). By “disaster,” we mean anything from Northern California’s next major earthquake — which experts insist is coming — to a localized fire, flood, or even simple human error. It’s worth preparing for any contingency that could knock out your data center for hours, days or weeks at a time. The longer your IT network is down, the longer you’re out of business — with money flying out the door.
Have you ever considered that a “simple” virus attack like Cryptolocker, or an employee’s supposedly innocuous mistake, could totally take your company down? That’s also a disaster. Disasters are no longer just low-frequency events.
A disaster can happen to your firm at any time — even in the next five minutes.
DR isn’t the same thing as simply backing up applications and data. It means minimizing that costly downtime by having the ability to fully restore your network as soon as possible. Many smaller businesses used to rely on a system of backing up files on their own external drives or tapes, which seemed to offer an adequate solution… until the day they needed to manually restore their entire network. Between the time commitment involved and the trial-and-error results, small business owners realized that disaster recovery without specialized support can quickly turn into a second nightmare.
Today, small businesses are increasingly turning to a Managed Services Provider (MSP) to design and implement a cloud-based DR solution. While most people think of the cloud simply as offsite data storage or a “virtual” operating environment, added benefits include quick, hassle-free recovery from any catastrophic IT failure — allowing small businesses a level of data protection equivalent to that of larger enterprises, at a reasonable monthly cost.
Among the many advantages of partnering with an MSP is developing a customized DR plan, whether that’s a wholly cloud-based platform (hosted completely at a cloud data center) or a hybrid solution (cloud-hosting in tandem with the customer’s onsite equipment). A premium MSP is staffed 24/7 by knowledgeable IT professionals who will regularly test the entire DR system to ensure it’s ready when needed.
When it comes to day-to-day IT operations, preparing for a worst-case scenario is usually the last thing most small business administrators think about — until it’s too late. Safeguard your company’s livelihood with the help of an experienced Bay Area MSP with over 31 years of trusted reliability. Give disaster recovery planning a closer look.