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Oct 26
2012

Using Toolkits to Make Business Continuity Easier

Posted by Courtney Bowers in Business Continuity , Avalution Blogs

Courtney Bowers

By Greg Marbais, Avalution Consulting
Article originally posted on Avalution Consulting’s Blog

Many business continuity professionals face shrinking budgets and, because of an expanding business continuity program scope and aggressive recovery objectives, lack the time necessary to “touch” all areas of the organization and optimally prepare for disruptive events. As a result, practitioners need a way to create repeatable processes to execute recurring planning activities in a decentralized manner while making efficient use of the organization’s personnel to comply with management’s expectations. One approach we often find useful in rolling out a standardized, thorough, efficient and repeatable process for business continuity activities is the creation of a business continuity program toolkit. A business continuity toolkit typically contains a set of instructional narratives, as well as templates, tools and examples to help dispersed personnel appropriately execute business continuity planning activities consistent with organizational standards.

Oct 22
2012

5 Tips for Keeping Your Data Safe in the Cloud

Posted by Adnan Raja in Cloud Hosting

Adnan Raja

Sometimes after you migrate your business data and applications to the cloud via cloud servers, it is easy to forget that data security is something that should be consistently monitored.  There are a few things to consider after your company’s migration to the cloud to ensure your data stays safe at all times. 

 

Oct 19
2012

A Closer Look At: ISO 22301

Posted by Vicki Thomas in rules and regulations

Vicki Thomas

I just downloaded the updated Rules and Regulations spreadsheet... To say there is a lot of great content and information in this spreadsheet would be an understatement. This Rules and Regulations spreadsheet was compiled by a team of industry experts (all members of the DRJ EAB). 

The most recent update to this resource was in August 2012, and I thought it would be a good idea to write about different rules and regulations that you might not know about, have been recently amended or added or you might not fully understand. (Yes, this is me urging you to post comments about which rules and regulations you would like me to investigate and write about for you!) 

Oct 16
2012

DR and Crisis Management

Posted by Dr Tom Phelan in ICS in the Private Sector

Dr Tom Phelan

Recently, DR/BCP professionals have sent me inquiries about how to handle crisis management or crisis communication, especially during a DR event.  DR/BCP professionals may be highly involved in managing a data or system recovery and unable to devote attention to managing the entire crisis that may result. They need crisis management professionals on their team.  It wouldn't be practical to have a crisis management professional on each DR/BCP team, but it w0uld be an excellent time to partner with the corporate or organizational crisis management/crisis communication professional.

I've done Incident Management Team training for private sector organizations, sometimes at several of their critical facilities across the nation.  The Incident Command System (ICS) model provides a framework for integrating crisis management, crisis communication and DR/BCP operations when disaster strikes.  Most private sector organizations have found ICS to be extremely helpful and affordable if it has be tailored to their business and presented by consultants who understand both the private and public sector uses of ICS.  Private sector CEOs also see the benefit in being compatible with public emergency response organizations.

Oct 10
2012

The GAP in DR/BCP/EM Technology

Posted by Dr Tom Phelan in Emeregency Management

Dr Tom Phelan

The GAP in DR/BCP/EM Technology

Recently I attended a concert at my grandchildren’s school in a small, rural community in Upstate New York.  A small child in the row behind me was using what appeared to me to be a tablet computer. Amazed by the use of technology, even by very young children, I had thoughts of how widespread the use of sophisticated technology had become, even in remote areas.  There have been times when I felt government agencies and some businesses assumed the presence and use of technologies to be far greater than actual.  I challenged a DHS employee on the use of GIS and various mapping capabilities, stating that rural communities lacked such capabilities. He replied that his information was just the opposite, that the use of GIS and other mapping functions was very popular and widespread.

Oct 05
2012

Using Cloud Hosting as Your Business’ Disaster Recovery Solution

Posted by Adnan Raja in Cloud Servers

Adnan Raja

It is clear to see why businesses put so much emphasis on backing up their data – they need their data to be secure so that their customers can rely on them.  Therefore, an effective disaster recovery plan is essential for every business that relies on stored data.  Furthermore, a successful disaster recovery solution requires additional resources identical to those used during daily operations.  

While there is a wide selection of disaster recovery solutions, cloud hosting provides the most flexibility and ease of use, while remaining cost-effective.  As opposed to purchasing two physical servers (one as your day-to-day server and the other as your backup), cloud servers provide the benefit of being able to easily create multiple servers in the cloud without needing to lease/own physical servers. 

Oct 04
2012

5 Crisis Management Truths from the Tylenol Murders

Posted by Wayne Blankenbeckler in Untagged 

Wayne Blankenbeckler

The 1980’s Tylenol poisoning murders spurred panic, wide-spread fear, and perhaps the best-ever corporate response to a major public relations crisis. James E. Burke, then CEO of Tylenol-maker Johnson & Johnson, died on September 28 at the age of 87. He will be best known for his strong, decisive leadership and what has widely been recognized as a model of exceptional corporate crisis management. Fortune magazine named him one of history’s 10 greatest CEOs.

Sep 27
2012

Apply to Increase Local Resiliency: Community Resilience Innovation Challenge Funding Available

Posted by Mike McClain, Senior Web Designer & Site Manager in Untagged 

Mike McClain, Senior Web Designer & Site Manager

A lesson we can take away from the recent severe weather and fires across the country is disasters can happen anytime, anywhere. No one can control where or when emergencies may happen but we can take steps in advance to prepare. Today, I am excited to announce a step towards better preparing local communities before disaster strikes – the 2012 Community Resilience Innovation Challenge.

This new opportunity is designed to assist local areas in building and revitalizing community-based partnerships through innovative initiatives and programs designed to advance the nation’s resilience to disasters. Funding levels range with a maximum of $35,000 and applications are open to all local, state, and tribal agencies and governments, business entities, associations, organizations and groups.

Sep 24
2012

BCM World Conference and Exhibition 2012 – just another event?

Posted by Mike McClain, Senior Web Designer & Site Manager in Untagged 

Mike McClain, Senior Web Designer & Site Manager

Life as a BCM practitioner in any organisation can sometimes feel like you have been sentenced to solitary confinement. Often working in isolation and surrounded by your ‘adversaries’, it can be a lonely role as you struggle to embed BCM into your organisation and to win over some of your strongest critics. Coupled with the need to be a ‘jack of all trades’ that requires you to be knowledgeable, persuasive, inspirational, and highly-organised as well as a skilled facilitator, being a BCM practitioner can be a really tough job.

Just when you feel your energy levels dwindling and see your enthusiasm ebbing into the distance, along comes the BCM World Conference and Exhibition – the one that reaches the parts other conferences cannot reach, filling you with renewed energy and rekindling your passion for the discipline that is the love of your life.

Sep 21
2012

Disaster Recovery for HIPAA Data & Applications

Posted by Adnan Raja in HIPAA Data Security

Adnan Raja

In 1996, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) was enacted to help address concerns regarding health care data security and privacy.  As part of the administrative safeguards of this act, health care facilities are responsible for backing up their data and having a disaster recovery plan in place for responding to emergencies. 

In general, health care facilities are responsible for maintaining the availability, integrity, and confidentiality of their patients’ Protected Health Information (PHI).  If a patient arrives in the Emergency Room in the middle of the night, the physician needs to be able to access the patient’s electronic health records quickly so that they can address their needs effectively.