Data Backup or Business Continuity - They're not the Same

We write about backup system quite regularly.  Over the years, the backup systems have changed; from diskettes, to removable media, to various kinds of tapes, to today's cloud based backup systems.  However fundamentally there are two very different ways of looking at backups.  

You know you need data backup, but when do you need a business continuity solution?

If you’ve been paying attention to the news, you’ll know that massive global ransomware attacks are only growing in scale and frequency. These attacks and other threats and accidents that cripple, ransom, or destroy organizations’ data are a convincing argument for a solid backup solution. Restoring from a data backup is often the only reliable way to recover from these events. Even smaller organizations and businesses know that they need some sort of backup solution. But when do you need more than a regular data backup? 


Local Flooding Affecting Computer Technology

During July, the Ithaca area has experienced record rainfall.  While great for most of the crops and our lawns, there have been a number of flash floods affecting several business and organizations.  Fortunately, this doesn't happen often in our area. However, a flood, even when small, can damage or destroy computer and other electronic technology.  A number of local clients had siginificant damage to some or all of their computer technology.

Some reminders:

  1. When installing new or updating computer technology, network servers, or any electrical or electronic equipment, avoid basements and other near to the ground locations.  Seems obvious, but in most businesses, putting the network server in the basement seems like "just the right place" and "out of the way".  It is, until the day water finds its way to the same place.  If you must put a server or computer in a basement, keep it well off the floor and be very vigilant should there be the possiblity of a flash flood.


Well, It Happened Again!

Try as we might, some clients still believe their computer equipment will never fail and they will never lose any of their data.  But, unfortunately all mechanical devices eventually fail.  Traditional disk drives spin at 7,500 – 15,000 rpm with their read/write heads literally “flying” less than a millimeter above the disk surfaces.  If a head touches the surface or a motor or head actuator fails, the drive and all the data are toast.  It may be possible to retrieve data from a failed drive, but it’s not easy, it takes time, and it’s relatively expensive.


Can Your Business Survive a Disaster?

We heard it this past week: "Nothing will happen to my business!"  "The weather here is not that bad!"  "All my company's important information is in my head!"  
Our community was just incredibly fortunate.  We escaped Hurricane "Sandy"!  Nothing much happened here.  However, just a hundred miles to our southeast, people and businesses were not so lucky.  People lost their lives. Billions of dollars of business and infrastructure have been damaged and destroyed.  It will take weeks, months, and in some cases years to assess all the damage and to rebuild.  
The reality is that too many of our clients are not prepared to deal with a hurricane, fire, flood, or blizzard; all of which have happened right here in Central New York in the very recent past.  A few businesses have failed because of those disasters. On the one hand, we don't want people to go around being scared, but without any planning or forethought, you are just rolling the dice.


Possible High Winds and Heavy Rain for Mon & Tues

We might be seeing some high winds and heavy rains in the Ithaca and Central New York area from Monday late afternoon through Tuesday mid-day.  Although most eyes are looking toward our southeast for the worst of "Sandy", our area could be affected as well.  So what to do about your technology:

First and always:  Make sure you, your family, and your co-workers are safe and prepared. Know where community shelters are. If your organization has a DRP or BCP, make sure all the pieces are in place and ready to go.  If you don't know these initials, now is not the time to learn them.


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