How much data can you afford to lose?

September 28, 2016

The challenges that small businesses deal with never end and for the small number of employees who have to take on these tasks, it can quickly get overwhelming. No wonder many small businesses have all but ignored the important task of developing a disaster recovery plan, which involves understanding the risks of the disasters that small businesses face, figuring out how to mitigate the risk, and implementing a business continuity solution to minimize downtime.
Importantly, the disasters that cause small organizations the most damage are the ones that many business owners may not consider to be all that common, such as hardware failure and power outages. Here we will address common disasters that small businesses face, so that business owners have a sense of perspective when considering a disaster recovery strategy.
1. Hardware failure

One of the most disruptive disasters that can strike a small business at any time is hardware failure. Whether it is a clicking hard drive in an email server or a fried motherboard inside a server, any kind of hardware failure can result in the inability to access critical data. Possibly the worst aspect of hardware failure is that it is inevitable, yet completely unpredictable.

2. Software corruption
 Permanent corruption of server data, such as corruption of the server’s operating system or damage to business critical applications that run on the server, could lead to significant downtime. Even the most sophisticated storage apparatuses are not immune to software corruption. A study by CERN, the world’s largest particle physics lab, revealed software corruption in 1 out of every 1,500 files. Software corruption could severely disrupt small businesses that do not have a backup or disaster recovery solution in place.
3. Cyber-attacks

Viruses, worms, Trojans – any and all forms of malware can wreak serious havoc on small businesses. According to the National Small Business Association’s Year-End 2014 report, 1 out of every 2 small businesses reported being the victim of a cyber-attack, with the average cost of each cyber-attack exceeding $20,000. The consequences stemming from cyber-attacks – such as data theft, data corruption, and permanent data deletion – can seriously affect businesses and their customers. Though using a firewall and security software is an important first step, having a continuity strategy in place in case cyber-attacks get through to a company’s systems is crucial.

4. Power outages

Blackouts, power shortages, and other power-related issues are not as uncommon as you may think. In fact, a 2014 survey by power management firm Eaton Electrical revealed that 37% of IT professionals had dealt with “unplanned downtime due to power-related issues in the last 24 months,” with 32% of outages lasting longer than four hours. Even more concerning are the high costs of downtime. According to a May 2013 survey by research firm Aberdeen Group, the average cost of downtime for small companies was a whopping $8,581 per hour. Electrical issues are real – and they are costly.

5. Natural or site-wide disasters
Natural disasters, including tornadoes, earthquakes, and hurricanes, can cripple small businesses. Even more threatening are fires, floods, and other common catastrophes that can occur regardless of a particular geographic location’s propensity toward certain natural disasters. Since these disasters almost always lead to site-wide damage, small businesses with only one or two locations are especially vulnerable. No amount of money spent can prevent site-wide and natural disasters from occurring. The only recourse for businesses affected by these calamities is to get back up and running as soon as possible after they happen.
We at Emerson Tech know how devastating downtime can be for your business. A business continuity strategy gives your business fast and complete recovery options in the event of an outage or disaster so that your business can stay productive.
As your trusted IT service provider, we promise to work with you to minimize the risks and costs of downtime. Call us to learn how we can improve your backup and disaster recovery strategy. contact us at 651-454-7729 or email help@emersontech.net

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