10 Tips To Help Protect Your Data From A Crisis
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10 Tips To Help Protect Your Data From A Crisis

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Quantum's CTE, David A. Chapa, offers 10 tips to help protect business data from a crisis.

Quantum's CTE, David A. Chapa, offers 10 tips to help protect business data from a crisis.

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10 Tips To Help Protect Your Data From A Crisis 10 Tips To Help Protect Your Data From A Crisis Document Transcript

  • 10 Tips To Help Protect Your Data From A CrisisBy David A. Chapa, Chief Technology EvangelistQuantumWrite or Update Your Data Protection PlanIf you do not have a formal plan or your plan hasn’t been reviewed then now is a good time to begin this process. Identify the systems anddata that are mission critical to your business functions (Accounts Payable, Customer Database, etc.). Next, identify your critical systems anddata and finally the less important deferred systems and data.Document this plan and make sure you keep a copy or two offsite in the event you do not have access to your facility. Make sure part of thisplan includes a “call-tree”. Who do you call in the case of disaster and in what order?Identify The Last Known Good Data BackupHow recent is the backup? When was it tested? Where is it located?Are you certain all of your mission critical and critical systems are protected in this backup? How many copies do you have?Backup DestinationIf you backup to a disk appliance, replicate the backups to secondary facility that will not be impacted by the same disaster as your primary (ie.power grids, network outages). If your final endpoint is tape for your backup, ensure these tapes are securely stored in an offsite facility whereyou can gain access in the event of disasterIT PersonnelIdentify the team responsible for recovering the systems, based on your recovery plan. Make sure everyone has a job and understands whatthat job is during the recovery process.Test Your PlanThis cannot be stressed enough – test these plans to the point of failure. In this case, failure is good. It allows you and your team to fullyunderstand the gaps in the plan and what contingencies need to be put into place. You never want to be surprised during a real recoveryVirtualizationVirtualization has really made a big impact on IT organizations. Helping to consolidate multiple physical servers down to a few running virtualmachines can be a huge asset to you during recovery. Make sure your solution allows you to quickly protect and recover your virtualmachines.Remain CalmMost IT disasters grow in severity when the team’s responses are driven by panic. Knowing you have a tested plan in place is a criticalcomponent to successfully executing against the recovery strategy. Too many times, IT organizations suffer a disaster that only grows morechaotic due to lack of leadership and organization.Maintain Communication To All Team MembersWhether it is through email, cell phone, text messaging or some online system you can take advantage of such as Facebook, Twitter, etc. In allprobability your corporate emails system may be down – find a way to stay connected.This allows management the ability to communicate externally, if needed. Sometimes, it is not the data outage or potential data loss thatreally impacts the business, but rather the PR fall-out as a result of poor communication.Vendor supportAs part of your plan, you should also identify the vendors and products you are using. This is a critical step that many neglect; you shouldinclude all the vendors in your recovery plan. When you declare a disaster, one of the phone calls should be to your Value Added Reseller(VAR) partner who you should then direct to contact the various vendors to put them all on notice of your situation. If and when you needadditional assistance, your request will not come as a surprise.Learn From ExperienceTesting is vitally important but real life response can never be mimicked. Immediately after the recovery and all mission critical systems arerunning, gather the response team for a debriefing.Each team member, should document their experience while it is still fresh in their minds.Review the recovery checklist – what worked, what didn’t work?Identify how you can improve and update the data protection plan.