A Step-by-Step IT Disaster Recovery Plan
No one likes to think about the possibility of an IT disaster that could take down their company’s website or that could cause them to lose vital data. However, disasters do happen, and you need to be ready. A good disaster plan can help to keep your data safe against natural disasters, it can help to reduce the damage of a cyberattack, and it helps to ensure that you can keep private data and information safe.
Below are the steps you will want to have your company take to create a quality disaster plan that will help to minimize the risk to the business. Always make sure that you record and document your disaster recovery procedure fully.
Step 1: Create Recovery Objectives
One of the major goals of a recovery plan is to make sure that you can reduce the amount of downtime your company faces in the event of a disaster. If you have a company that requires on fast and easy access to data for your employees, clients, and customers, you will want to make sure that you are creating a plan that will focus on how to get up and running quickly, while ensuring that your information is private and secure. Colocation can help with this immensely, as it will keep the servers off your physical premises and will keep them in a safe location.
Even though you don’t want to go through a disaster, it is also a good idea to create a disaster recovery fund. This will set aside money or Bitcoin that may be needed to get everything back up and running. Having this money ready to go in the event of a disaster will help to offset the financial issues that might occur right after a disaster.
Step 2: Catalog Your IT Vulnerabilities and Overall Risks
When you are creating your plan and your recovery objectives, you need to know where your greatest vulnerabilities are located. For example, you will want to think about the types of disasters that happen where your business is located. In certain states, wildfires might be a problem. Other places might have to deal with flooding. Think about the physical safety of the servers from theft, as well.
Again, choosing a colocation site can help with this. You can keep your servers located in areas that are not prone to disasters. This means that even if there is a problem where your physical business is located, your servers will be safe in an entirely different location.
Step 3: Create a List of Those Involved
You should put together a list of all of those who will be involved with the disaster recovery plan, as well as ways to contact them and when they should be contacted in the event of a disaster. This is essentially a call list, so the plan can be enacted quickly and efficiently.
Before instituting the plan, you must make sure everyone knows what constitutes a disaster. A temporary outage might happen on occasion, and it is not always a reason to institute disaster recovery. In the event of a natural disaster, though, it probably would be. Make sure people know when to start the disaster recovery plan.
Step 4: Choose a Data Recovery Option
There are different types of data recovery options available, such as cloud-based recovery as a service. Colocation can often provide recovery services, and they may even have redundancies, so you will not need to worry about recovering the data. It will be ready to go. There are also companies to which you can outsource your recovery. Most will want to speak with the professionals in their IT department to find the solutions that will work best for their company.
Step 5: Make Sure Everyone is Trained
Everyone who is a part of the disaster recovery team, whether it’s a handful of people or an entire department, will need to be trained. Each of the team members will have to know their role in the recovery process. Keep in mind that this can sometimes mean adding team members that can make announcements on the website or social media regarding a data loss or breach, for example.
Step 6: Test the Plan
You won’t know if your plan is going to work unless you take the time to test it at least a couple of times a year. Make sure that everything on the plan is still applicable, and that you update names and contact information of everyone who is on the team. Test the plan to see how it works in practice, and make sure that you are upgrading your plan regularly. If you notice new flaws or areas that need to be covered, add them to the plan. Never rest when it comes to the protection of your data.
By following these steps, it will be easier for you to come up with a quality disaster recovery plan that will work when you need it. Hopefully, you never will need it, but it will be nice to have in place just in case.