Are Your Backups Working?

Posted on: February 27th, 2013 by jiml | No Comments

In the simplest terms, a successful data recovery from a backup system requires two conditions.

  • Is the data you need on the backup?
  • Is it restorable?

At Colden Company Inc. we are Certified Business Continuity Specialists and we have assisted in many recoveries and, just as critically, we have been involved in helping many businesses plan to avoid a disaster.  The best way to avoid a situation where you cannot recover from a disaster is to avoid the disaster in the first place. It is not possible, of course, to prevent every disaster. External natural disasters like Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina are obvious ones, and cyber security threats – which we are seeing in ever increasing numbers – are another. Even though we cannot prevent the hurricane or prevent the hacking attempt, we can mitigate the risk by taking measures to secure our critical data and assets.

These points seem like common sense to most of us.  There are things we can do to protect our businesses. The fact is, however, that many businesses do not take the necessary precautions. Take the very basic two conditions for a successful recovery. When is the last time your business evaluated its critical data to ensure the data it needs is indeed being backed up?  Is there a regular mechanism in place to account for changes and new data?

Looking at the second condition, when is the last time your business tested its backups to ensure that recovery is even possible?  These are very basic steps every business should take, yet surprisingly many do not.

At Colden Company Inc. we believe the reason for this is twofold: responsibility and a sense of urgency. Every organization should have someone in charge of these tasks. Bear in mind that the IT professional may not know what the business leaders deem as critical data.  You may want to appoint someone from your business unit as the responsible party.  If there is a responsible party, the simple tasks of testing backups and reviewing the critical data may still go unfinished. If your business knew a disaster was coming, the effort would be there to prepare.  Unfortunately, we don’t always know when a disaster will strike.  This underscores the importance of putting forth the effort and creating that sense of urgency to get the necessary tasks done.

According to Microsoft, 42% of tape based restores failed.  If you are not periodically testing your restore process, are you one of the 42%? There are myriads scary statistics about the percentage of businesses that fail as a result of being unable to recover critical data. Why take the chance when there are simple, repeatable processes that can ensure your business avoids those pitfalls? 

Have we helped to create that sense of urgency?  Call Colden Company Inc. today and let us help ensure that your business is not one of the 42%. We can be reached at (888) 600-4560, at info@coldencompany.com, see us on Facebook (and like us!) or on Twitter (@coldenco).







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