Step No. 4: Deploy reliable, flexible and easy recovery options
Even successful backups have limited value unless the data can be recovered under any circumstances and with minimal burden on IT resources. Businesses should therefore deploy recovery technology and strategies that are reliable, flexible and easy.
Recovery must be reliable
For distributed organizations, turnovers might include closures of entire distributed work sites. Preemptive steps can be taken to establish that backups get replicated to secondary business-owned sites, hardened disaster recovery sites, third-party offsite portal services or hybrid combinations (for example, back up executive e-mail to a managed service provider (MSP) offsite and back up all other data to a secondary, business-owned site).
Recovery must be flexible
Businesses often deploy devices far beyond the intended or supported service lives of the hardware or drivers. During a major work force turnover or corporate restructuring, data may need to be restored to new or larger device platforms-even to virtual environments. IT should confirm any bare metal recovery solutions include the capability to restore data, applications and operating systems to dissimilar hardware.
Recovery must be easy
While all businesses should prepare for catastrophic data recovery, they must also weigh in factors of cost and complexity. While larger businesses struggle for optimal productivity from shrinking IT staff, and smaller businesses rarely even have a data recovery expert on site, nearly all daily restore requests are made by individual users for single files. Enabling user-directed restoration of their own individual files without administrative intervention can drastically reduce burdens on IT resources and lower recovery overhead costs.
A comprehensive approach to orphaned data is essential for best operating practices. And work force turnover is just one area to consider in data loss prevention. Natural disasters, a stolen laptop or simply a user saving the wrong file version can all lead to lost data. And any lost data can be very bad for business. In fact, up to half of all small businesses impacted by major data loss tend to shut their doors within five years. Additionally, business owners can be liable under regulatory mandates to ensure that certain data is backed up and recoverable for auditing purposes.
Chris Winter is the Director of Product Management for SonicWALL. Chris has managed data storage and security products for over 20 years. Working closely with customers and partners, Chris has architected innovative solutions that have delivered secure and reliable backup and disaster recovery to both small businesses and enterprise customers. Having lived and worked on four continents, Chris is finely-attuned to the differing needs of different geographies.
Prior to SonicWALL, Chris managed security appliance solutions for NeoScale Systems, which encrypted tape backups and disks for enterprise customers. While at NeoScale (first acquired by nCipher and then by Thales), Chris designed and architected an encrypting NAS server. In the process, he submitted five patents for security techniques that he developed. Chris is an expert in high availability computing and disaster recovery, and comes from a deep technical background where he managed teams of up to 30 leading-edge engineers. He can be reached at email@example.com.