If you focus on headlines these days, it may seem like threats to business are becoming more frequent and severe. You might even believe Mother Nature and nefarious individuals are conspiring against us, causing data theft and record breaking storms a weekly basis. But of course, we cannot approach business by constantly looking over our shoulder.

Improving data recovery

Even so, data shows that weather-related events are causing more damage and loss over the past decade, and the trend isn’t slowing. In addition, we still face questions regarding the security of data long-term.

WORK AROUND: After personal safety is secure, preparedness changes gears to involve data security — ensuring your workplace can function offsite and maintain productivity. Photo: Steve Pedulla/Agility Recovery

Fortunately, we live in an age where options for data security are becoming ubiquitous, especially in industries that rely heavily on connectivity, documentation and data. However, a common deficiency remains in which organizations are not sufficiently preparing for physical recovery, beyond the simple backup of data. Therein lies the problem.

While data recovery is an essential step in a comprehensive disaster plan, it is useless if offsite storage or cloud recovery becomes inaccessible due to lack of connectivity, power and suitable workplace conditions. And while many organizations utilize a “work-from-home” strategy, in that scenario can data integrity be guaranteed and will productivity suffer?

“While data recovery is an essential step in a comprehensive disaster plan, it is useless if offsite storage or cloud recovery becomes inaccessible...”

Other precautions

Having access to data recovery is a critical step, but other elements must be accessible in order to achieve that step in the first place. Do you know where personnel and office operations could relocate should your primary location(s) become uninhabitable? And if you were to lose power for an extended period, what type and size generator would you need, and how would you connect it, maintain and refuel it regularly?

What if internet and phone connectivity were down? Can you quickly restore communications so you can reconnect with your data provider and handle inbound and outbound telephone calls? Finally, when considering the health and welfare of your employees, providing replacement office space should be a top priority.

The likelihood of a total loss of your facility may be remote, but there are situations that could result in just that. You must have a plan to relocate personnel to a site that accommodates your staff, equipment and customer needs. Bear in mind that moving to another city, or even simply across your own town, could present massive complications to employees with families, children and pets.

Remember, preparing for disasters isn’t just a data issue, and certainly isn’t limited to IT functions. It’s about protecting the day-to-day ability to server your customers in a safe environment, away from the chaos of disaster zones.