Disasters take many forms. Fire or floods make headlines and have enormous impact - however it's the common, everyday actions that are the most likely to strike at the heart of your business. Accidental (or malicious) data deletion, accidents to hardware and poor security are the daily disasters just waiting to happen.
It's indoors, not outdoors, that the biggest threat to your business continuity lies.
Catastrophe has struck. If you're one of the 60% of today's businesses who ship backup tapes offsite, you're now scrambling to retrieve those copies. Once back in the building, you'll need to ingest the data to your backup server…. restore data and applications to your primary servers… and you're up and running again. Sometimes, after considerable downtime.
Alternatives to tape backups include replicating data to a secondary site, mirroring the data centre. It's a pricey option, requiring not just a secondary data centre facility, but also additional sets of identical servers, storage, switches and software etc.
The advent of hybrid cloud solutions offers a combination of on-prem and off-prem disaster recovery-as-a-service models. Data is deduplicated and compressed, and backed up locally. The off-prem element is provided on a subscription basis, often eliminating many operational responsibilities.
Being prepared means having a solid business continuity and disaster recovery plan. Fundamental issues to consider include how quickly your business would need to recover from an incident, and how much data loss is acceptable. This dictates what preparations are needed, and how much budget needs to be set aside.
One Size Doesn’t Fit All
Which are the applications that are driving your business, generating revenue or are key to staying operational? Mission-critical, business-critical and non-critical applications will vary across your organisation, you'll have applications with differing service level agreements and potentially different requirements for their recovery objectives. Ranking your applications and services helps identify the impact of relevant incidents, so a suitable solution can be designed, addressing two key criteria:
- Recovery Time Objective (RTO). This is the target time you set for normal operations to be restored after an incident occurs
- Recovery Point Objective (RPO). This focuses on the data your business could lose after an incident, and setting a limit, measured in time.
In an ideal world, both RTO and RPO would be as little as possible - but this could incur a cost that's outweighed by the potential benefit. .
You'll be used to regular fire drills, so should there be a real event, everyone knows where they go, what they do (and what they do not do), and what they are responsible for. A disaster recovery strategy requires the same approach. Regular testing of each of the processes and procedures ensures the plan is fit for purpose, and highlights any updates required as the business environment changes.
Backup & DR Knowledge
Staying Secure Online
Our Information Security Officer, Joseph Ball regularly writes articles on different aspects of security. Joe's articles have proven to be really popular with our own people and he's often asked if they can be shared with colleagues outside of Chess. With this in mind, I thought it may be something you are interested in.
Capturing Requirements in a Virtual Workshop
Until March this year, the assumption was that we could meet in person with a client or project partner several times to move through the requirements definition process. As it turns out, the process of developing a new digital approach which utilises a combination of existing and emerging tools has evolved like a project in itself. These are our tips.
Critical Thinking and Confirmation Bias
I'm not a supporter of #DeleteFacebook because it's like saying if you don't want to get electrocuted, get rid of electricity. It's stupid. No, demand better standards for your electricity, so you don't get electrocuted…" – Christopher Wylie, Cambridge Analytica whistle-blower
Chess Wins Two Cybersecurity Awards
The Chess team have proven the invaluable work they do and have been recognised for their outstanding performance and commitment to securing organisations, by picking up two awards in the Sophos Partner Awards 2020 - Public Sector Partner of the year and Education Partner of the year.
Changes to Terms and Conditions
We have made an amendment to our General Conditions to include a definition of Supplier. We have made this change because the General Conditions together with the relevant product and service specific terms and conditions contained with Schedules 3 and 4 will soon apply to all direct customer contracts across the Chess Group.