Computer disaster recovery is something anybody who has a business that uses computers – which is to say most businesses these days – needs to have a plan for. You just can’t think that a physical or natural disaster, not to mention a monstrous computer virus, won’t happen to you. These days, even a week or two without access to your data could potentially destroy your company. For example, a power outage that fries your computer server and loses all of your orders for the last three months could put you out of business for good.
Being prepared is critical
You never know when things might happen to your business that could destroy your computer service, or can keep you from getting access to it for weeks or months. For example, due to Superstorm Sandy, homes were not the only things hard-hit. In lower Manhattan, there are still a number of businesses that are not up and running, 2 ½ months after, due to flooding in the office buildings. Even those upper floors that were not affected by the storm are still out of commission, due to the entire buildings being closed. And some of the office buildings may be closed for as long as a year or even longer. So those companies who had computer disaster recovery plans can be up and running elsewhere, while any business that does not could be suffering right now.
That’s not to mention things like fires that could destroy computer hardware and data, or viruses that could contaminate data. So it is important to have a computer disaster recovery plan in place. Such a plan should consist of the following things:
- Regular backups of your data. The longer you go without running backups on your computer data, the more negative impact you can expect from a computer-related disaster. Depending on your business, you may need to run backups every week, every day, or even more than once a day.
- Data and software in the cloud. These days, having your computing in the cloud isn’t just a great way to have people from far-flung areas working with the same data. It is also a great method of computer disaster recovery. Data on a physical server in the office can be destroyed if a physical disaster were to hit your company. But if you have data in the cloud, you can still access your data after a disaster, as well as operate your business at a different location if you need to after a disaster.
- A backup location in mind. If your company is inaccessible due to a natural or man-made disaster, like a bombing, you should think of some options about where you can temporarily do business. Would you and your employees be able to work out of your homes, or from some other location? You should have some sort of backup plan in mind, just in case a disaster was to strike.
Lisa Swan writes for computing sites like MadisonTI.