IT Planner: 5 Steps to Continuous Data Protection - Page 4
In addition to ensuring business continuity, many CDP systems offer sophisticated search capability that allows com??ípanies to locate specific files quickly-a requirement for recent additions to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure regarding digital data that went into effect Dec. 1, 2006. The new rules require com??ípanies to have policies in place regarding data storage and quick search and accessibility in case of litigation. A good CDP system will find digital evidence in a timely manner. Step 5: Test for Holes.Most CDP systems are equipped with self-testing tools. Gartner estimates that these kinds of tools are used only once a year on average. That's not nearly enough, according to Dunkelberger, who said that monthly-or at least quarterly-testing is preferred. "IT managers should be rigorous about making sure their CDP systems are always tuned and doing what they're supposed to be doing," he said. "Compliance is going to change, technology is going to change, data formats are going to change ... Do you think that anybody ever envisioned that you were going to be able to put the Library of Congress on a USB thumb drive someday? I don't think so." Consider Apple's iPhone, Dunkelberger said. "[The iPhone] is causing fits among IT security and business continuity professionals," he said. "It's not just a phone; it's a 60GB, multifunctional device with all kinds of processing power on it." Dunkelberger recommends that IT managers look at all devices in terms of their data storage capabilities and what that means for CDP planning-or the subversion thereof. "Look at the new devices for data storage," he said. "If you do not have a continuous, rigorous continuity strategy that involves the senior management business plan, you will find yourself in the lurch at some point, driven by the next new toy someone wants to bring into the environment." What does it take to persuade IT decision ??ímakers to plan ahead and look at a CDP strategy? The answer: pain. First of all, IT managers can pretty much count on at least one major outage per year, according to IDC and Forrester Research market studies.
Once the CDP system is up and running, test it frequently to make sure there are no holes in coverage.