qr code generator excel 2007 16: Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity in Software

Generation QR Code in Software 16: Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity

16: Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity
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(of taking and maintaining the backups) which is, say, $10,000 annually The second equation yields a figure of $9000 The first of these two figures can be considered the probable loss you can expect if your organization has no backup The second figure can be considered the price you are willing to pay (spend) to ensure that you can restore, should a problem occur (think of this as backup insurance the cost of an insurance policy that may never be used but that you are willing to pay for, just in case) In our example, the cost of maintaining the backup is less than the cost of not having backups, so the former would be the better choice While conceptually this is an easy tradeoff to understand, in reality it is often difficult to accurately determine the probability of a backup being needed Fortunately, the figures for the potential loss if there is no backup is generally so much greater than the cost of maintaining a backup that a mistake in judging the probability will not matter it just makes too much sense to maintain backups To optimize your backup strategy, you need to determine the correct balance between these two figures Obviously, you don t want to spend more in your backup strategy than you face losing should you not have a backup plan at all When working with these two calculations, you have to remember that this is a cost-avoidance exercise The organization is not going to increase revenues with its backup strategy Your goal is to minimize the potential loss due to some catastrophic event by creating a backup strategy that will address your organization s needs When calculating the cost of the backup strategy, consider the following elements: The cost of the backup media required for a single backup The storage costs for the backup media and the retention policy The labor costs associated with performing a single backup The frequency with which backups are created All these considerations can be used to arrive at an annual cost for implementing your chosen backup strategy, and this figure can then be used as previously described Storage of Backups An important element to factor into the cost of the backup strategy is the expense of storing the backups A simple backup storage strategy might be to store all your backups together for quick and easy recovery actions This is not, however, a good idea Suppose the catastrophe that necessitated the restoration of backed-up data was a fire that destroyed the computer system on which the data was processed In this case, any backups that were stored in the same facility could also be lost in the same fire The solution is to keep copies of backups in separate locations The most recent copy could be stored locally, as it is the most likely to be needed Other copies can be kept at other locations Depending on the level of security desired, the storage facility itself could be reinforced against possible threats in your area (such as tornados or floods) Another more recent advance is online backup services A number of thirdparty companies offer high-speed connections for storing data in a separate facility on a frequent basis Transmitting the backup data via network connections alleviates some PART V
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other concerns with physical movement of more traditional storage media such as the care during transportation (tapes do not fare well in direct sunlight, for example) or the time that it takes to transport the tape data Issues with Long-Term Storage of Backups Depending on the media used for an organization s backups, degradation of the media is a distinct possibility and needs to be considered Magnetic media degrade over time (measured in years) In addition, tapes can be used a limited number of times before the surface begins to flake off Magnetic media should be rotated and tested to ensure that it is still usable Another consideration is advances in technology The media you used to store your data two years ago may now be considered obsolete (525-inch floppy drives, for example) Software applications also evolve, and the media may be present but may not be compatible with current versions of the software Both hardware and software versions associated with the data at creation can become obsolete, yet they might be needed to recover the information Another issue is security related If the file you stored was encrypted for security purposes, does anyone in the company remember the password to decrypt the file to restore the data Alternative Sites Related to the location of backup storage is where the restoration services will be located If the organization has suffered physical damage to its facility, having offsite data storage is only part of the solution This data will need to be processed somewhere, which means that computing facilities similar to those used in normal operations are required This problem can be approached in a number of ways, including hot sites, warm sites, cold sites, and mobile backup sites A hot site is a fully configured environment similar to the normal operating environment that can be operational immediately or within a few hours depending on its configuration and the needs of the organization A warm site is partially configured, usually having the peripherals and software but perhaps not the more expensive main processing computer It is designed to be operational within a few days A cold site will have the basic environmental controls necessary to operate but few of the computing components necessary for processing Getting a cold site operational may take weeks Mobile backup sites are generally trailers with the required computers and electrical power that can be driven to a location within hours of a disaster and set up to commence processing immediately Shared alternate sites may also be considered These sites can be designed to handle the needs of different organizations in the event of an emergency The hope is that the disaster will affect only one organization at a time The benefit of this method is that the cost of the site can be shared among organizations Two similar organizations located close to each should not share the same alternate site as there is a greater chance that they would both need it at the same time All these options can come with considerable price tags, which makes another option, mutual aid agreements, a possible alternative With mutual aid agreements, similar organizations agree to assume the processing for the other party in the event that a disaster occurs The obvious assumption here is that both organizations will not be af-
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