Business continuity and disaster recovery planning is frequently overlooked, avoided or procrastinated into oblivion. Every year, many readers report that they are not confident in their organization's ability to recover following a disaster. They frequently cite a lack of support from management because BC/DR planning can be expensive and there is no immediate return on investment. It's often compared to buying insurance -- investing in something you hope you will never need. But, it doesn't have to be that way.
Business continuity and disaster recovery planning can and should be integrated with your day-to-day operations. Over the past few years, DR planning has become more affordable and easier thanks to advancements in technologies. Creative planners are finding ways to integrate disaster recovery with other essential operations to streamline processes.
This guide offers a collection of our best business continuity and disaster recovery content. You'll find information on BC/DR planning and management; server, storage, networking and security technologies; and free downloadable templates that simplify the planning process.
Good planning and management are key for business continuity and disaster recovery success
Disaster recovery and business continuity planning isn't a one-time event. Good DR/BC requires ongoing management. This section offers information on conducting business impact analyses and risk assessments, how to form an incident response plan, personnel issues and training, DR testing, change management, and BC/DR standards.
Evaluating risk assessment and business impact analysis data is a key factor in preparing a proper BC plan. Continue Reading
Paul Kirvan says that reminding senior management of the last disaster and impact to the organization is one way to get upper management buy-in for DR. Continue Reading
Paul Kirvan discusses the importance of the change management process for disaster recovery in this Expert Answer. Continue Reading
Paul Kirvan looks at ANSI/ASIS SPC.2-2014, a standard designed to facilitate audits of management systems that focus on "risk, resilience, security, crisis, continuity and recovery management." Continue Reading
The BIA is related but different from the risk analysis process. This article discusses what each should accomplish. Continue Reading
Examine off-the-scale scenarios in your BC/DR exercise planning by conducting extensive research to design situations based in reality and experience. Continue Reading
Learn how to perform a BIA, and download our free template and guide to assist you in your business continuity planning. Continue Reading
Download a free risk assessment template, learn about free risk assessment tools and read about all aspects of risk management in this guide. Continue Reading
2Storage and servers -
Recent storage and server developments ease BC/DR planning
Enterprise operations can grind to a halt without access to data, so it is important to have a strategy in place that allows you to get back up and running quickly following an outage. Advancements in server and storage technologies have streamlined business continuity and disaster recovery in recent years. Learn more about backup, snapshot, replication and how server virtualization can ease BC/DR by reading the articles in this section.
Where does the cloud best fit into data protection, archiving, DR or backup? Continue Reading
Learn how cloud and virtualization enable DR as a service, which makes effective disaster recovery realistic for smaller companies. Continue Reading
Eric Slack discusses DR testing today and the technologies that are improving users' ability to conduct regular, effective DR tests. Continue Reading
Learn about Windows failover clusters and their role in VM backups and restoration in this tip from Microsoft expert Brien Posey. Continue Reading
Learn how negotiating SLAs before setting backup policies can help get business buy-in for data protection. Continue Reading
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Network disaster recovery planning and building resilient networks
Learn how networking technologies such as WAN optimization can help enable data replication over distance and some of the challenges associated with this approach. The articles in this section are also about designing resilient networks, VPN considerations for DR, dealing with failover/failback issues, protecting voice and data networks, and more.
Independent disaster recovery expert Paul Kirvan offers advice on addressing common mistakes in network DR strategies in this Expert Answer. Continue Reading
Understand the tools, technologies and strategies used to ensure business continuance and disaster recovery for your WAN services. Continue Reading
WAN optimization can have a huge impact on your data movement processes in your disaster recovery infrastructure. Continue Reading
This guide and free template can help you prepare and deploy a network disaster recovery plan for voice and data communications. Continue Reading
4Protecting against threats-
Security an important part of BC/DR planning
Learn how to protect your organization's data against theft or corruption from outside (or internal) attacks. As another important aspect of business continuity and disaster recovery planning, this section has info on security best practices, protecting intellectual property, access control, and encryption.
Disaster recovery and business continuity plans must adapt to the digital age, and the new threats it brings. Here are 10 tips for getting there. Continue Reading
At times, security incident response procedures require drastic measures. Expert Nick Lewis explains when and how to perform a system shutdown. Continue Reading
Simply encrypting data is not a substitute for strong physical security and proper account usage. Learn more about backup security in this tip. Continue Reading
IT managers should not overlook the potential of a physical assault on their primary data center. Learn how to protect your organization against external (and internal) attacks. Continue Reading
BC/DR planning considerations for facilities
From protection against natural events to setting up a secondary disaster recovery site or alternative workspace, BC/DR planning for an organization's facilities encompasses a wide variety of factors. Some factors may apply to many organizations, while others will be business-dependent. This articles listed in this section contain information about emergency power supplies, fire suppression, conducting damage assessments and more.
A risk assessment provides valuable data about an organization and the threats it faces -- information that is critical to craft a business continuity or disaster recovery plan. Continue Reading
Learn the specifics you should evaluate when choosing between diesel and natural gas for your generator. Continue Reading
Fire suppression systems are important to have in your DR plan. Learn the pros and cons of the most popular fire suppression options. Continue Reading
This free template simplifies the physical assessment of your DR site. Continue Reading
Key terms to aid with business continuity/disaster recovery planning
If you are just getting started with business continuity and disaster recovery, this glossary of common terms can help.
- Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR)
- business impact analysis (BIA)
- risk analysis
- remote replication
- local area network (LAN)
Test your knowledge
Now that you've read the guide, see what you have retained with our BC/DR quiz.