Preventing Unexpected Disasters: Corporate IT and Data Infrastructure
Unfortunately, all enterprises may face unexpected disasters that can damage or destroy their data. Therefore, it is important for organizations to prepare their IT environments, applications and data infrastructures accordingly. As a best practice, business should have business resiliency (BR), business continuance (BC) and disaster recovery (DR) strategies in place.
You know that your company may face unexpected disruption or disasters that can impact your business and also potentially damage or destroy its data. You probably also know that it's important to prepare your IT environments, applications and data infrastructures accordingly. As a best practice, your company should have business resiliency (BR), business continuance (BC) and disaster recovery (DR) strategies in place.
Here are some unexpected disasters that you should be aware of so you can take steps to isolate or minimize the negative impact:
1. Natural Disasters
Fires, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and other acts of nature can damage your data facilities and all the information that lives within them. It's important to follow the necessary procedures to back up this information through tape vaulting or offsite storage solutions.
2. Cyber Attacks
In today's digital age, viruses, ransomware attacks and other acts of cyber terrorism are becoming increasingly prevalent. You can protect your information by implementing proper security measures to prevent cyber attacks and putting an emergency or remediation plan in place so all employees know how to react quickly and efficiently to protect valuable data from being compromised.
3. Employee Accidents
Sometimes employees will make mistakes when handling data. Perhaps you've seen them accidentally delete files or save information in the wrong place. Or maybe you've had an employee turn off the wrong power switch or unplug the wrong network cable. While these types of accidents are unavoidable to a certain degree, it is important for organizations to think of the potential repercussions of data loss. In an effort to prevent these scenarios, IT departments and legal and compliance professionals should provide their fellow employees with proper training concerning day-to-day data management operations.
4. Equipment Failure
This category includes any technological issues that affect a company's:
- hardware (servers, storage, appliances, I/O and network switches, bridges, routers, firewalls and access points)
- software (bios and firmware for hardware, operating systems, hypervisors, data protection and management tools, file systems, databases, middleware, development and applications)
- or services (network bandwidth, monitoring and cloud and managed services).
Another technology area that is prone to disasters or disruption is the physical infrastructure, which is made up of data center facilities, primary and standby power, cooling units and communications platforms. For example, a region-wide power failure could put an infrastructure and its data at risk.
There are many types of unexpected disasters that occur within this technology function. For example, your organization's devices could be improperly configured or fail due to bugs or old age. As such, you must evaluate how often they back up and protect the information that lives in multiple locations of their data infrastructure. Your should have your organization's various systems, hardware, software, applications and network configurations saved across different backup mediums to fall back on if needed. Furthermore, you should have saved copies of system setup, hypervisor configuration, keys, certificates and other security credentials.
5. Using Outdated or Improper Data Management Procedures
When employees don't follow the best practices for their data environment, they put this information at risk. For example, compromises made in the interest of time or budget can subsequently result in an unexpected disruption or disaster. Furthermore, data may be comprised in cases where employees use outdated processes, procedures, tools and documentation. As such, it is critical for you to ensure that all of your company's data management policies are relevant and up-to-date.
By putting proper disaster recovery plans in place, your organization will be well-equipped to handle even the most unexpected downtime.