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Thursday, 18 January 2018 15:24

We Surveyed Over 1,000 Firms and Your Business Probably Has A Disaster Recovery Problem

Evolve 14 Plunger FINALBy DON MENNIG

Before I share the DR problems Evolve IP identified in our 2018 Disaster Recovery Survey I have a couple of writing caveats.

Caveat #1.) I’m not a ‘New Year’s Resolution’ kind of guy

Caveat #2.) I really dislike clichéd content – I don’t need to read “5 Reason’s To Wash My Windows” … I know they are dirty.

Caveat #3.) I often times find myself in the minority J!

So, for those of you that like resolutions and “Top 5” lists I am pleased to present …

“The Top 5 Disaster Recovery Resolutions for 2018!”

Click-bait ads coming to the bottom of a news website near you ;)

Now, unfortunately in all seriousness, our survey uncovered some very distressing disaster recovery statistics that need to be addressed by organizations before it’s too late.

Resolution #1: Complete your DR plan and implement and test your plan.

Yeah, you’ve heard it before, but just like giving up your penchant for deep fried Twinkies some things never seem to get done and this year’s survey again proves the point! Only 31.5% of our nearly 1,000 respondents (IT professionals and C-level executives) noted that they had a complete DR plan! Perhaps even more alarming, of the 68.5% that did not have a complete plan, four in 10 had a plan that they felt was less than three-quarters of the way complete.

As you can likely imagine, rolling out an incomplete plan to the organization might seem odd and it’s likely causing DR plans to remain on the shelf. Only 2/3rds of respondents had formally implemented their plan in the business.

To continue with the Twinkie bashing, we all know that chowing down on the cream-filled, artery-clogging sweetness could potentially be really bad for you down the road. You also know that having an untested DR plan is bad for your businesses health. Our survey revealed that less than half of the firms had actually tested their DR plan in the last year.

Then again what are the chances your organization will actually need a data defibrillator in 2018…?

Resolution #2: Don’t get stuck in denial

Turns out, the chances are pretty high. Based on our survey results you need to change your mindset about DR: it isn’t if a DR incident will occur, but when. Over 1/3rd of participants noted their organization had suffered an incident that required disaster recovery. And while hardware failure was the leading cause of incidents (noted by 50%), deliberate attacks are getting worse and growing faster than any other category.

In 2017, the number of respondents reporting that deliberate attacks had caused DR incidents increased to 17% compared to 13% in 2016 and 6.5% in 2014! You might take all of the precautions in the world against attacks—constantly changing passwords, deploying aggressive security software, implementing secure file sharing and more —but hackers are getting smarter every year and your associates are still human and make mistakes

Resolution #3: Treat DR as though you have compliance requirements.

Even if your business does not have compliance requirements, it would likely benefit from acting as though it does. Of organizations that had suffered from an incident that required DR:

• 43.5% without compliance requirements took more than one business day to recover their IT operations.

• Just 28% of those with compliance requirements took more than one business day to recover their IT operations.

 Resolution #4: Fight for your DR budget.

As you’d probably expect, companies that budget sufficiently for DR are more likely to feel very prepared to fully recover from an incident. In fact, 65.5% of those firms noted they felt “very prepared”. Not so much for the under-funded. Just 1 in 5 of underfunded firms were feeling “very prepared” to handle a DR situation.

What sets off the alarm bells here is that four in 10 IT professionals felt that their organization had underfunded DR. Interestingly, three in 10 C-level executives agreed. Couple those numbers with a 33%+ likelihood of a DR situation arising in the future and you’ve got the potential for a major problem!

So, how do you fight for budget? Share some of these survey results with your executive team along with a document that quantifies just how much an outage will cost your business in terms of lost sales and productivity! We created a simple downtime calculator to help you determine what it will cost you.

Resolution #5: Evolve Your DR Strategy

Far too many organizations continue to use legacy or unsecure approaches to DR introducing un-necessary risk and greater chances of failure. A couple of statistics really jumped out:

• 38% of firms relied on servers and hardware at the same location as the rest of their infrastructure

• 35.5% of firms use tapes for backup 

• 22% relied on public cloud for DR

If you’re relying exclusively, or primarily, on one of the methods above, take the time in 2018 to begin researching other solutions like DRaaS from providers such as Evolve IP or investing in a private, secure, secondary site that is geographically distant from your primary location.

Happy New Year! I wish you, your families and associates success and good health in 2018.

To learn more about Evolve IP’s suite of DR solutions visit www.evolveip.net/draas-suite.

Don Mennig is the senior vice president of marketing for Evolve IP.