Data Recovery Readiness: 3 Key Questions To Ask Your Client

It’s not just “an IT issue” when an organization can’t access its data. Everyone in the organization is affected, from the CEO to line of business employees. 
 

  • June 30, 2021 | Author: Todd Hyten
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Do your clients think of disaster recovery as an “insurance policy”? While that may give them some comfort, it’s probably not the best attitude. That’s because insurance policies are things that you work on at the start, then file away in the back of a drawer. 

But threats to data and data disasters are hardly rare events. IDC research from December 2020 found that 84.6 percent of organizations dealt with a malware or ransomware attack in the past year and 56 percent of organizations reported an unrecoverable data event at some point during the past three years!
 
And even though ransomware is a growing concern, other types of less exotic but no less severe data disasters happen all the time: fires, blackouts and brownouts during extreme weather, hurricanes, and yes, human error. 
 
That’s why your clients should be doing regular restore exercises as part of their data processes. Any organization should have a clear plan to react to a real data emergency as a matter of IT policy. It’s not just “an IT issue” when an organization can’t access its data. Everyone in the organization is affected, from the CEO to line of business employees. 
 
To help encourage restore exercises, here are three questions you can ask clients or prospective customers: 
 
  • Do you have a data recovery playbook? This is a step-by-step guide on how to react to various data emergencies. While recovery may be accomplished quickly, the process and steps should be well documented. Even though data can be restored, an organization still needs to investigate the causes of an incident and alert those departments affected or involved. 
  • Who is in charge of what during a data disaster? This is the “people” part of business continuity. In the event of a data emergency, who is tasked with being “hands-on” for the restore part and who do they need to inform? Is there a plan of who to go to when designated employees are not available? Can people get in touch with their solution or managed service provider? Everyone involved needs to know what their role is before a disaster. 
  • Is your recovery process current? This question is important because rarely are IT infrastructures “set and forget.” They organically grow and evolve over time. New hardware and software get added all the time. Maybe not in the blink of an eye, but day by day an organization’s infrastructure is changing. Are they periodically ensuring that they are covering all restore points? Are all apps getting backed up? 
Your client doesn’t need to have the right answers. They just need to be aware that testing the restore process in a variety of scenarios makes them more agile and efficient. Being ready for a data disaster in any form will ensure they stay one step ahead of today’s challenges. 

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