[Editor’s note: This guest post comes to us courtesy of tech consultant Rick Delgado. To submit guest articles email firstname.lastname@example.org]
In today’s technology-driven, data-intensive IT environment, a disaster recovery strategy is not an option. The Internet of Things has proliferated. It will not slow down, and artificial intelligence is gaining ground on all fronts. The business IT environment is more vulnerable than ever. Paths of accessibility are multiplying rapidly and, no matter how strong your data security plan is, cybersecurity incidents cannot be 100% avoided.
Here are some of the top reasons you should reinforce your disaster recovery strategy now, if you haven’t already.
There are Many Means of Access
Multiple login credentials are useful for boosting security, although they can slow things down. It may take more time to access the corporate network. This is like entering multiple credentials when accessing your bank account by phone. Cyber-attacks don’t necessarily have to be from an outside. Although stealing sensitive company data is big business, there are internal threats as well. A breach from another company department or even a disgruntled employee can happen for many reasons. Therefore, you should have the most secure login methods available.
Your disaster recovery strategy should consider threats from all fronts, the measures in place to deal with them, and the procedures for managing incident response. If not, you could be left in the dark at a bad time. There may not even be a way to know an attack is occurring. The longer you wait, the more likely it is data will be lost. Start with the most vulnerable areas and data. Migration should start here so you can reinforce the IT disaster recovery environment.
Secondary Sites Are Targets Too
If your company is like many, the production environment is the most secure, but secondary sites don’t receive as much attention. Disaster recovery environments often fall under this umbrella. Cyber criminals are very aware of this, and focus on the easiest, most unsuspecting ways to grab at data. The consequences, from revenue to reputation, can be just as severe as when a cybercriminal hits your core network.
Tape Backups May Not Be Secure
Just because you have tape-based copies of information, it doesn’t mean they are safe. Criminals are still just as adept at finding physical data stores as virtual ones. Storing tape backups off site and having their delivery confirmed ensures you know where the information is, and who has it.
Machines/Hardware Can Fail
Today’s computer hardware is more durable and resilient than ever before. That doesn’t mean an Internet connection or hard drive won’t fail at some point. A disaster recovery plan is therefore critical, and should include secure data backups or even Disaster Recovery as a Service as an outsourced solution. Also, machines do have glitches and can make mistakes. If key steps in the process are missed, a machine might not know how or where to store a file. Incremental online data backup is a solution that can mitigate the risks in this area.
Losing Customers Is Expensive
Customers in a Web 2.0 world expect their user experience to be perfect. You must therefore be transparent and accountable, because no customer is giving much thought to your disaster recovery strategy. If service isn’t ideal, they will move on. Your strategy should include a system that will keep service functional no matter what. A single IT disaster can remove customers’ trust, especially if it involves extended outages and loss of data. Remember, it costs less to retain a customer than to acquire a new one.
Remember, as they say, you are only as strong as the weakest link in your organization. Your disaster recovery strategy should be in place and cover everything. A cyber-attack not only threatens the infrastructure and hybrid cloud computing within your business. It also threatens the integrity of your organization’s bottom line. A well-formulated strategy – accounting for customer service, data security, and business continuity – should be in place now.
Rick Delgado is a business technology consultant for several Fortune 500 companies. He is also a frequent contributor to news outlets such as Wired, Tech Page One, and Cloud Tweaks. Rick enjoys writing about the intersection of business and new innovative technologies.