How To Solve Big Problems with a Disaster Recovery Plan by Randy Jackson
I have consulted with many companies that thought that putting together a Disaster Recovery Plan (DRP) meant just backing up their data on some type of media. NOT TRUE!!! There are many different facets that make up a true disaster plan. Being knowledgeable of what goes into a DRP is extremely important. I hope to eventually provide a more comprehensive overview of all the various elements that contribute to a solid DRP but for now, let’s start with some of the more common ones.
Data retention is probably the most obvious and common that people start with. I suggest two types of data retention that need to be done. Onsite backup and offsite backup. Whether its tape media or USB hard drives, you should back up your data onsite for the fastest recovery of your data. You should also sign up for some type of online internet backup system for offsite recovery. Buildings can burn down, or tornadoes/hurricanes can wipe a building out in seconds. If that happens, your tape backup is gone along with your building. There are manufacturers that can provide you with a system that will back up your data onsite and push that data to their secure site. These devices are more expensive but are great for easy administrative use.
There are other things you should do to create a true DRP. You should have a team that is responsible for all of your records, numbers, addresses, etc. as well as, keeping them up to date. You should have a backup plan in place and in some type of manual format. You will need a phone tree and know of where and how your employees should meet should a true catastrophic disaster happen to your building. You should have Disaster Plan Insurance from your insurance company to help cover the cost to get a new/temporary site setup. You should also keep cash in a safe because if there was a wide area type of disaster, banks could potentially be down as well. Cash is king.
You should begin putting some thought into backup plans for things as simple as your phone circuits, internet, electric, and so on. The planning involved in a good DRP is just as important as the plan itself. Feel free to ask questions on other types of solutions I have provided for other companies. Not every company is the same, so not every DRP will be the same.