Are your mission-critical systems protected? Do you have data backups stored and a plan in place to access those backups?
A disaster recovery plan creates a modern IT environment that protects your company’s data and systems from the most common threats and disruptions. A 2018 survey found that 77% of IT-related companies experienced at least one outage in the last 12 months, with 30% reporting lost revenue from the event.
How can you ensure you’re prepared?
Mitigate the impact of a hack, breach, or power outage with a BCDR: business continuity and disaster recovery plan.
The “business continuity” piece focuses on keeping essential operations running during an event, while “disaster recovery” gets everything back to normal as quickly as possible. When you prepare and test your plan ahead of time, you can prevent losses by smoothly and effectively dealing with inevitable outages.
In this article, we discuss exactly how you can mitigate risk by utilizing your business continuity and disaster recovery plan. We also outline the procedures and decisions that will allow your company to adapt and carry you through any disaster recovery or backup scenario.
What is business continuity in cyber security?
In cyber security, the business continuity concept focuses on keeping vital operations running during a worst-case scenario.
If your systems are compromised or experience an outage, you need a plan to ensure your company can continue its most essential functions.
The process generally starts with a business impact analysis, which considers the most (and least) realistic scenarios when it comes to cybersecurity threats. The research will also consider the parts of your business most likely to be affected, such as revenue stream, legal fees, or reputation.
Based on their findings, the team can propose a tailored strategy to address your specific company’s risks.
Is business continuity part of IT security?
IT security, and cybersecurity in general, should be a part of your business continuity plan.
They form the actual mechanics of the process, allowing you to create a functional business continuity and disaster recovery plan in cyber security.
Your IT support team should work closely with the drafters of your BCP, helping them think through concrete issues like data and asset management, system backups, and common scenarios to plan for.
Your ideal business continuity plan should include plenty of support from the IT and cybersecurity department, as their backup systems might mean the difference between function and failure in the case of an outage.
What is business continuity planning and disaster recovery?
If a system goes down, what are the critical elements you’ll need, and why should you even worry about having a plan for business continuity?
Isn’t it best to patch the problem as soon as possible, without spending precious time launching stopgap measures?
Can’t you just devise a plan on the fly without spending resources and money beforehand on a project that might never get used?
While these are valid concerns, the benefits of a business continuity management plan far outweigh any downsides.
What is the benefit of BCP?
First, you should never dismiss the possibility of a severe disruption—hacks happen all the time, and even something as simple as a storm or power outage has the potential to disrupt your business operations.
If you avoid a BCP because the likelihood is “just too low,” and you want to come up with something on the fly, you’ll be too late. Most business continuity plans require planning, such as creating backups, discovering the most effective substitutes, and laying the groundwork for an operating company that can weather attacks.
This sort of planning and preparation simply can’t be duplicated in a few hours, especially as your cybersecurity and IT teams are focused on actively fixing the issue.
Moreover, without a business continuity plan, you’ll feel the disruptions long after technicians fix the issue.
For every lost hour of business operations, you increase your potential of lost revenue, damage to your reputation, and even internal confusion as employees cannot do their jobs or lose access to essential systems.
In contrast, with a plan in place, you’ll be able to continue basic operations, even while you wait for the problem to resolve.
While you may not be able to complete all business activities, with a good BCP, you’ll be able to do the most critical, time-sensitive things. Not only will this help during the outage, but it will also ensure a more seamless transition back to normal operations once the issue is fixed.
In sum, a business continuity plan is invaluable because it gives you the tools you need to keep moving, saving you money, keeping your company grounded, and minimizing the long-term effects of disruption.
What’s the difference between business continuity and disaster recovery?
Of course, business continuity planning and business continuity management are just one part of the overall picture.
Business continuity and disaster recovery in cybersecurity are terms that get tossed around a lot. However, there are a few differences between the two concepts.
While business continuity focuses on keeping things running during a breach, disaster recovery emphasizes picking up the pieces and returning to normal as quickly as possible.
Your disaster recovery plan should be closely connected with your business continuity plan. This ensures the most seamless transition from stopgap measures to newly fixed systems.
With disaster recovery planning, team members will use many of the same tools as when creating your business continuity plan. They’ll analyze risks and run possible scenarios before making systems designed to mitigate the impact of outages.
However, these systems are more focused on restoring access to data and getting systems back online as soon as possible—promoting a return to normal. Ideally, your business continuity plan and disaster recovery strategy should be closely connected parts of your overall outage mitigation plan.
Is disaster recovery part of cyber security?
Disaster recovery, like business continuity, is an integral part of cybersecurity.
It uses the tools of an IT and cybersecurity team to address outages before they happen. With a good plan in place, you can ensure that even if initial security measures fail and you experience an outage or breach, your business can still function at the most crucial level and restore full access quickly.
Business continuity and disaster recovery in cybersecurity are vital to keeping your business safe and operational.
Should your business consider formulating a BCDR plan? Absolutely! It only takes something as small as a power outage to potentially disrupt your operations.
You can’t afford to wait until the very last minute to throw together interim measures! Instead, plan by conducting impact analysis, pinpointing relevant risks, and putting together an effective BCDR plan that keeps your business up and running.
You’ll stay ahead of the competition with less downtime, a more organized response, and a stronger reputation.
Are you interested in creating a business continuity and disaster recovery plan but unsure where to start?
At Expedient Technology Solutions, we can help analyze your level of risk, discuss impacts, and formulate an effective plan to minimize losses. Schedule an appointment with us today to discuss your options!