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Data Backup and Disaster Recovery

CEO. Here’s why you care about Data Backup and Disaster Recovery.

Introduction

As a proactive CEO, you know that implementing a solid business continuity and disaster recovery plan, also referred to as BCDR, is essential for your business. After all, why would anyone in your position ever put a business at risk to downtime or data loss when prevention is so easy? But if anyone asks, here are four critical reasons that you, the CEO, care about business continuity and disaster recovery.

You Care Because Downtime is Expensive

If your employees or customers lose access to business-critical applications and data, there will be a direct impact on productivity and revenue. While this sounds obvious, many organizations do not consider the actual costs of downtime. To better understand this cost, consider the following example using Datto’s RTO calculator. Let’s say your business has 100 employees, average hourly revenue is $1,500 and the backup data set amounts to 2 TB. Given these parameters, a full restore from a local backup would take over 8 hours. The associated downtime cost would amount to $34,000 in lost revenue. Some modern BCDR products offer the ability to run applications from backup instances of virtual servers. This allows users to continue operations while primary application servers are restored. Choosing a BCDR solution aimed at reducing downtime makes good business sense.

You Care Because Backup Alone is Not Enough

You’d be hard pressed to find a business today that doesn’t conduct some form of data backup. But, what happens if a flood wipes out your primary and backup servers? Sending a copy of data offsite for disaster recovery should also be considered essential. Historically, this meant sending tapes to a secondary location or tape vault. As previously mentioned, modern BCDR products can run applications from backup instances of virtual servers, and some can extend this capability to the cloud. This approach is frequently called cloud DR or disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS). The ability to run applications in the cloud while onsite infrastructure is restored is widely considered to be a game changer for disaster recovery. As CEO, you don’t want yesterday’s backup technology. Backup and business continuity are not one in the same. Your business needs both.

You Care Because of the Risk of Disasters

Not every disaster is broadcasted on news and weather channels. Most IT downtime is a result of common, every day actions like accidental (or intentional) data deletion, damage to computer hardware and poor security habits. For example, a recent CompTIA study found that 94% of respondents routinely log into public Wi-Fi, in spite of security risks. And, 69% of this group accesses work-related data over public Wi-Fi. A ransomware attack or virus can halt operations just as easily as a tornado or a power surge. These “lower-case d” disasters are typically a result of human error, which is unpreventable. Having technology in place that allows your business to continue operations following these “hurricane humanity” disasters is equally if not more important than protecting against a hurricane that may or may not strike your business.

You Care Because Business Continuity is Everyone’s Concern

Data is essential for all types of organizations today, so ensuring access to applications and data following a disaster is critical. But it’s just one piece of the BCDR puzzle. Evaluating your business’ ability to restore IT operations can be a good starting point for company-wide business continuity efforts. Good BCDR planning should look at the business as a whole, and the goal should be to develop business resilience. In fact, many BCDR planning efforts start by conducting a business impact analysis or risk assessment— these studies can reveal weaknesses in your business’ ability to continue operations that go far beyond IT. You know a disaster (natural or otherwise) is coming at some point and in the company you lead, everyone has a stake in BCDR.

DTS InfoTech Can Help

Most small businesses do not have the technical resources to manage their own technology. If this describes you, we can help! If you would like more information please give us a call, we’re always happy to chat and the call is free.

Dedicated to your success,
Wally Moore
General Manager and Compliance Officer
dts|infotech . . . computer networks that work
503.359.1275
www.dtsinfotech.com

 

Data Backup and Disaster Recovery – Critical business topic.

Data Backup and Disaster Recovery is the headline for our third and final post on this critical topic to businesses of all sizes.

If you ever have to recover from a data erasing disaster at your business and you’re prepared, you’ll be able to say, I’ve been there, I’ve done that and it saved my business!”

But if you’re not prepared or you’re not sure about data backup to begin with, well . . . you should continue reading.

We’re posting this blog for everyone who feels unprepared for this and for those who did not choose the responsibility of Data Backup and Disaster Recovery at the company you work for.

For this week let’s talk about:

Data Backup and Disaster Recovery

and 3 reasons for small businesses

to consider storing data in the cloud.

(By the way, cloud storage just means you’re keeping your files in a physical location other than your office and that data is online and available through the Internet. For example, if you’ve used Google’s Gmail service, you’ve used the cloud).

#1 – 50% of businesses that lost their data (for 10 days) filed for bankruptcy immediately.

#2 – 93% of companies that lost their data for (10 days) filed within one year of the disaster.

#3 – IT outages cost SMBs an average of $12,500.00 per day.

What this means is larger businesses could stay in business a little longer, but 9 out of 10 still filed for bankruptcy within one year.

At DTS InfoTech, we use and recommend the following:

  • Onsite local backups AND offsite backups to the Cloud.
  • Creating an image of your server and PC’s saves you the time of re-installing and re-configuring.
  • Someone monitoring the backups.
  • Consistent validation and test restores.
  • A written Disaster Recovery Plan.

Client testimonial . . .

The very first time DTS InfoTech visited with me at my office they told me my data backups were not working . . . Having good data backups is critical to my business, so I told them I needed to get my data backed up immediately if that was at all possible. They explained what options were available to me, and after deciding what I wanted to do they started backing up my data within minutes using their cloud service. I was impressed because it seemed so fast and easy.

Sue Hjort – Ohanesian CPA 

What cloud service is Sue talking about?

  • CloudScape, from DTS, featuring Datto – recipients of multiple industry awards.
  • Data centers are located in Reading, Pennsylvania, Salt Lake City, Utah, as well as in Canada, U.K., and Australia. Data is stored in military-grade, SSAE 16 Type II certified secure facilities.
  • Data is encrypted using 256 bit AES encryption.

What are the benefits?

  • Automated data backups and business continuity.
  • Full server “disk image” backups capture all server data including Exchange and SQL Server.
  • File Restoration is available 24/7.
  • Login and view your information online.
  • Frees you from tape and hard drive rotation, monitoring and worry.
  • Daily verification of encrypted backups by fully booting each backup as virtual machine.
  • Disaster recovery within 24 hours. Business uptime in as little as one hour.

How do I determine if this is right for me?

  • Let DTS InfoTech perform an assessment of your current backup system and security.
  • We’ll review your backups and Disaster Recovery Plan.
  • Perform a speed test and network analysis.
  • Review your network documentation.

The evaluation is nice because you get to see us in action. You’ll see that we know what we’re doing at no cost to you, and you’ll know if you want to do business with us.

Call us today to schedule your FREE evaluation. 503.359.1275

Dedicated to your success,

Wally Moore
dts|infotech  . . . computer networks that work

www.dtsinfotech.com

 

 

Data Backup and Disaster Recovery – critical business topic.

Data Backup and Disaster Recovery is once again the headline for this second post on a critical topic to businesses of all sizes.

If you ever have to recover from a data erasing disaster at your business and you’re prepared, you’ll be able to say,“I’ve been there, I’ve done that and it saved my business!”

But if you’re not prepared or you’re not sure about data backup in general, well, you should continue reading.

We’re posting this blog for everyone who feels unprepared for this and for those who did not choose the responsibility of Data Backup and Disaster Recovery at the company they own, or work for.

Our heart goes out to you.

In this blog post

you’re going to learn 3 things:

#1 – A common misunderstanding most business owners have about their current backup system, who say, “. . . it’s good enough to have a copy of my data.”
#2 – The two-step backup system you must have in place to be 100% certain your business is back up and running FAST in the event of a complete disaster.
#3 – The only surefire way to know if your data is being backed up; almost 99% of business owners never perform this simple check.

So let’s begin by inserting you

into your own disaster at your business!

You’re at home one night watching TV and the phone rings. It’s the police department telling you your office building is on fire and you need to be there.

You’re in a state of shock, it’s surreal.

You get dressed and jump in the car.

When you get to your building there are fire engines and red lights and smoke.

Your business location 

has been completely destroyed by fire. 

There’s nothing left. What do you do?

Panic starts setting in. What you have to do is quickly restore your company data so your business will recover.
While you stand there in surreal disbelief you know you have to act, but the odds are stacked against you.

The first challenge for all of us who work in small businesses (SMB) is this:

25% of small businesses do not recover from major disasters: U.S. Small Business Administration

What you need is a tried and true plan to recover your business. A written disaster recovery plan that has been tested, modified and rehearsed.

Because . . .

A good backup of your data + a written and rehearsed disaster recovery plan = recovery. And speed of recovery = the survival of your business!

There are numerous reasons SMB’s may not recover. Let’s talk about 3 of them:

#1 – They’ll say, “I’m okay . . . I’ve got my data backed up!”
Data alone does not equal disaster recovery. It’s a critical piece . . . but it’s only one piece in the puzzle of getting your business up and running. Because even if you have good data, where are you going to put it?

Remember, in this scenario the physical location of your business is gone. You don’t have the hardware and software to put the data into. If you were storing your backups on hard drives located on-site, you’ve lost your backups as well.

Take a hard look at your business. How long you can go without your data?

Not very long is my guess. While you’re looking, consider this: how long in hours or days you can go without:

  1. Client data
  2. Accounting data
  3. Payroll

It’s a long list.

#2 – Outdated backup systems are prone to failure or poor results.
Those old tapes in my story had a lot of degradation and it took 2 weeks to get our data back. Yes, we did get it back, but by today’s standards 2 weeks are very poor results.

Backup tapes are old technology and prone to failure. Eventually 100% failure.

If you’re still using tapes you need to upgrade.

How is your relationship with your IT guy?

Are you thinking your IT guy has it handled? If you answer yes, remember, your building is gone.

#3 – When your building is gone, the IT guy does NOT handle that.
No IT company in the world, or any company, can take care of not being prepared. You have to handle that and your IT company can and should play a major role in that planning.

I want you to think about this. Your building is destroyed, everything will have to be replaced. That means buying all new hardware. How long will that take?

How long will it take to get a working network setup at a temporary location?

And that’s ONLY possible IF you have your software discs.

When you do get the new hardware, you still have to re-install the software. You do have those software discs and keys right?

You still have to restore the data . . . a process that can take days. Then you have to re-configure all your settings. You can’t get a temporary network going until you get all of this working. And all of this is only possible if you have a good, clean copy of your data.

Even then you could be down for 3 to 5 days.

Local backups are a must and the primary source for data restoration. But local backups are useless when your building is gone.

But you say, We swap tapes or hard drives. We take one of ‘em home each night. That way we’ve always got data off site and that’s good right?”

On one hand, yes, swapping out tapes or hard drives (data devices) is good. But have you considered that those portable tapes and hard drives can be lost, or stolen, or even NOT used?

Its’ true.

We’ve had clients tell us,We forgot to SWAP OUT the device.”  

We had one of our clients tell us,“I’m not changing those drive things out. Should I be doing that?”  We setup their system for them, trained them on media rotation and verified the data backups were working.

And you know what: it works great, when it’s used.

TIME FOR ANOTHER STORY . . .

This story happened right here in Portland, Oregon.

Because I’m a veteran this really bothers me.

A Veteran’s Administration sub-contractor had his laptop stolen from his home.
“The data was not encrypted, which would have prevented a thief from accessing the information . . . on more than 26 million veterans and their spouses.”  Nextgov.com

The VA has my social security number, my home address and my medical records. But now someone else has my personal information too because
the data was not encrypted!

Do you encrypt the “portable” data of your business to prevent anyone from accessing it?

Encryption is very important.

How’s that for an understatement?

At one time portable data was the “best” we could offer, but thankfully all of that has changed. But thieves are never going to change. Most small business backup tapes and hard drives are easily hacked because those devices are typically not encrypted or even password-protected.

Password-protected? You are you doing that right?

What’s encryption?

Encryption – is the conversion of data into a form, called a ciphertext, which is a fancy way of saying secret code, or gibberish.

Decryption – is the process of converting encrypted data back into its original form, so it can be understood.

For decades encryption has been used by the military. It’s great technology. But only if you’re using it.

I’m just sayin ;)

In our next post we’ll discuss: 3 reasons for SMB’s to consider storing data in the cloud.

If you would like more information on Data Backup and Disaster Recovery, download your Free Business Advisory Guide Here.

Don’t worry about some sales guy calling you from our office because you downloaded information off of our website. No one from our office will call you; I promise. We don’t like sales calls any more than you do!

If you would like to chat about this, or anything, call us at 503.359.1275

Dedicated to your success,

Wally Moore
dts|infotech . . . computer networks that work
www.dtsinfotech.com

 

Data Backup – Disaster Recovery

Is your data safe?

Data Backup and Disaster Recovery is the headline for this first post on a critical topic to businesses of all sizes.

If you ever have to recover from a data erasing disaster at your business and you’re prepared, you’ll be able to say, “I’ve been there, I’ve done that and it saved my business!”

But if you’re not prepared or you’re not sure about this whole Data Backup and Disaster Recovery thing in general, well . . . you should continue reading.

We’re posting this blog for everyone who feels unprepared for this, and for those who did not choose the responsibility of Data Backup and Disaster Recovery at the company you work for.

Our heart goes out to you as this post explains.

For this week we start with answering the question you may be asking

“Who the heck is DTS InfoTech and why should I listen to you?”

Well . . . you should listen because . . . 

  • DTS InfoTech currently supports about 80 small business (SMBS) networks.
  • Networks with multiples locations, no IT staff and very little money to spend on IT.
  • We’ve been managing computer networks for over 30 years.

Those alone are good reason to listen.

But you should really listen because . . .

  • You really don’t want to deal with Data Backup and Disaster Recovery. We understand.
  • You’ve been ambushed into backing up the data at your company. That is you didn’t ask for it.
  • But it’s part of your job. You’ll be encouraged.

If that describes you, our hearts goes out to you because . . .

  • We’ve been there.
  • We’ve done that.
  • And we can help you!

It starts with my own

disaster recovery story.

In 2004, the president of the manufacturing company I worked for at the time, called me into his office and showed me a medical implant. We had manufactured them for years. Pointing to the implant on his desk he said, “The original design notes and blueprints for this are backed up on tape right?”

I said, “That data is on old tapes in storage that we’ve never used. The IT guy before me replaced the old backup system with the one we’re using now. We haven’t used those old tapes in years.”

He said, “But I’ve been told the original design notes and manufacturing blue prints are on those tapes. You CAN restore that data right?”

I said, “Uh . . . yeah. We’ll have to send the tapes out to recover the data. Why do you want this done?”

He said, “Look at the implant.”

I had literally worked on thousands of them, so I knew the product very well. I picked it up and carefully looked at it, but I was confused when I didn’t see our
company name on it. The name that was there was a competitor of ours.

The president said, “Pretty good fake huh? It’s a knock off. We’ve filed a patent infringement law suit to stop them. But we need the date stamp from the original design notes and prints to prove that we’ve been making this rod for 5 years BEFORE our competitor released this.”

With a very serious look he said, “You CAN get that data . . . can’t you?” I said, “Yeah.”

And he said, “Good, you have two weeks.”

I sent the tapes to Ontrack, which is now  Kroll Ontrack, they specialize in data recovery. NASA sent the flight recorder box from the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster to this company and they recovered over 95% of the data that was found on that box at the bottom of the ocean.

Ontrack called me to say they could recover most of the data, but not all of the data, because magnetic backup tapes degrade over time and these tapes were old.

They said recovery would take them 5 days and cost $3,150.00. We accepted their price and turn around.

A week later, they sent us the recovered data and we were able to find and restore the original “date stamped” design notes and prints.

Mission accomplished!

A few weeks later, in downtown Portland, in the 4th Judicial District Court of Oregon, the lawyers for our company submitted these “date stamped” documents. When the judge announced his decision and the gavel came down, our competitor was found guilty of patent infringement.

You’ll find documents posted that state: http://law.justia.com/cases

“The jury found that Stryker had willfully infringed the Acumed patent and awarded damages based upon Acumed’s lost profits and a reasonable royalty. On February 22, 2006 the district court granted Acumed’s motion for a permanent injunction.”

That’s my own personal story and I’ve shared it because I want you to know that:

  • I had zero experience and no desire to change backup tapes.
  • Maybe you’re the same.
  • I felt ambushed into doing a job that “at the time” I wanted no part of.

So when I talk about Data Backup and Disaster Recovery, I’ve been there and done that.

In our next post you’re going to learn 4 things:

#1 – A common misunderstanding most business owners have about their current backup system. They say, “It’s good enough to have a copy of your data.”
#2 – The two-step backup system you must have in place to be 100% certain your business is back up and running FAST in the event of a complete disaster.
#3 – The only surefire way to know if your data is being backed up; almost 99% of business owners never perform this simple check.
#4 – How Cloud computing can make it easy for you and your staff to access your data from anywhere, while providing automatic data backup and business continuity.

If you would like more information on Data Backup and Disaster Recovery, download your Free Business Advisory Guide Here.

And don’t worry about some sales guy calling you from our office because you downloaded information off of this website. No one from our office will call you; I promise. We don’t like sales calls any more than you do! We understand if you’re not ready to do that, and if that’s the case, then just read these posts when they come out. We post on a regular schedule.

If you would like to chat about this, or anything call us at 503.359.1275

Dedicated to your success,

Wally Moore
dts|infotech . . . computer networks that work
www.dtsinfotech.com

 

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