Businesses large and small generate enormous amounts of data and those data files are vital to the survival and continued operation of the business. But data can be corrupted, compromised, stolen, or lost.

A recent survey conducted by the research firm Uptime notes that nearly one-third of businesses experienced a service disruption in 2018, up from 25 percent in 2017. The top three causes of that downtime were power outages (33 percent), network failures (30 percent), and IT or software errors (28 percent).

How will you protect your critical business systems and data in the event of a disaster?

The impact of data loss or corruption could result in significant business disruption. A sobering statistic: 25% of businesses fail to reopen after a major disaster. This is in part because 74% of business owners don't have any disaster recovery plan in place. You must have a plan for data backup and restoration of electronic information ready to go before disaster strikes. You can’t simply wing it in the moment. Disaster recovery and business continuity plans are essential to the continuation of your business.

business continuity plan is a comprehensive strategy that, when enacted, will allow business operations to continue despite some detrimental circumstance that would have otherwise derailed them. Without a business continuity plan in place, you’re vulnerable to chance --a risk that no business owner should take if they can help it.

The first step to creating a plan is to establish what that plan needs to address. To do this, you will need to identify where your greatest losses would be if disaster befell your business. What would the costs be if you were to suddenly lose all business function? How would the additional expenses of a disaster influence your cash flow? How long would it take you to recover? Once your plan is developed and documented, with responsibilities properly distributed, you need to train your staff and test the procedures that were just laid out.

Of course, you also need to be sure that your data is preserved, despite what may happen to your in-house equipment. A reliable backup solution is an integral part of any business continuity strategy. This backup should be incrementally updated throughout the day, and preferably, hosted in the cloud. At the very least, it needs to be in a different location than your original data, as a backup that is destroyed along with the original data will do you no good. Unfortunately, we can’t control all circumstances. We can, however, control how we prepare for them. With a solid plan in place, you’ll be well prepared when disaster strikes.

If you're a business in the Hudson Valley area, Meeting Tree Computer can help you put solutions in place to protect your business-essential data. Reach out to us today at (845) 237-2117. Let’s make disaster recovery a focus this year. Don’t let 2019 be the year when you’re caught unprepared.