The Cloud has become a key modern business resource, with almost every sector embracing the full benefits it offers. But ‘almost every’ means some have not, and enclaves remain that continue to rely on old ways. Surprisingly, when it comes to Disaster Recovery, some are still hesitant to new technology, leaving companies more vulnerable than they realise.
The very word ‘disaster’ should infuse a sense of urgency in the thoughts of CEOs, making protection against such events a logical investment. There are multiple disasters to worry about, from earthquakes, floods and hurricanes wreaking havoc on physical infrastructure to cyber attacks and even human error.
Research has revealed that rather than being a priority, Disaster Recovery has been left on the back burner by a large percentage of CEOs. It seems hardware and software-based replication and tape backup, are still considered ‘old and reliable’ data storage and recovery methods.
Slow To Change
Research shows that a willingness to adopt new digital storage technologies is not as prevalent as might have been thought. One survey, involving some 5,600 IT professionals around the world, revealed a reluctance to invest in the newest technologies is affecting IT resilience.
Instead, these companies are choosing to stick with on-premises systems and equipment and to leave such key undertakings as data migration and backup management to their own personnel. Some 53% of participants admitted favouring hardware replication as their data protection method of choice, with tape backup and software-based replication ranking second and third-favourite respectively.
Perhaps most worrying is the fact that 85% either had no recovery plan or were not completely confident in the plan they had drawn up.
But how real is the threat to businesses whose Disaster Recovery plans omit the migration to modern technologies, like the Cloud? And how do they leave a business vulnerable?
The threats are very real. According to figures from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), some 93% of US companies that fell victim to a disaster and whose data centre shut down for 10 days or more, filed for bankruptcy within 12 months of the event.
Other research suggests that SMEs can lose 25% in daily revenue by the end of the first week after a data loss event, which increases to 40% after one month.
But is a reluctance to leave behind these old Disaster Recovery methods really leaving businesses so vulnerable?
Why Cloud Disaster Recovery Wins Out
Cloud-based Disaster Recovery offer several benefits over traditional ways:
The key to Disaster Recovery is getting everything back up and running as quickly as possible. Cloud technology beats the traditional ways hands down. For example, tape backup may be considered very reliable but data recovery can take hours or days, making the option slow and (in the end) costly.
The Cloud allows companies to copy an entire server, complete with operating system, applications and data safely sealed inside. This ‘virtual server’ can be copied or backed up to an offsite data center and then accessed in a matter of minutes if a disaster strikes.
The costs involved in maintaining traditional methods are quite high. Mirrored servers, for example, are a popular option for large businesses, but maintenance is expensive. Not only does the hardware require considerable investment, cooling systems and security systems need to be ever-running.
Cloud-based data recovery is far more cost effective in comparison, with no capital expenses and flexible service payment options available.
Traditional Disaster Recovery methods can be rigid in their design, meaning they are set to accommodate a certain amount of data and little more. This can cause real problems as a company expands. Servers and other hardware will need to be invested in frequently, not least the tape backups occupying a growing amount of storage space.
The Cloud, however, is scalable. As the amount of data a business stores increases, the increase in storage capacity is immediate with no need to invest in anything more.
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