If you’re searching for a disaster recovery solution and you’re concerned about lowering the cost of resources and employee time, making use of Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) could be a viable choice. This technology can often provide an alternative or supplement to an on-site disaster recovery program. However, like anything, DRaaS technology can bring risks. While an on-site disaster recovery program would be completely managed by the IT department, a DRaaS solution can bring in unknown cloud service firms and Managed Service Providers (MSPs) into the mix. Though a third party can take a vested interest in your disaster recovery requirements, it’s important to do the necessary research when interacting with new players. With that in mind, let’s look at some DRaaS risks and how to mitigate them.
Mismanaging Data and Infrastructure
Those new to recovery planning can often unintentionally ignore the initial causes of disaster; namely a lack of management of infrastructure and data. Without proper data management, costs will increase during the planning process. If management isn’t aware of which data is important, then all data will be protected using costly methods. Additionally, if infrastructure monitoring and reporting capabilities cannot be implemented, you won’t be able to proactively respond to impending failures in equipment, which makes disaster harder to prevent. These issues can be mitigated through the deployment of data classification and resource management tools.
Disaster Recovery and Restoration
While your own disaster recovery strategy is of the utmost importance, your provider acts as your safety net, so they should also be prepared to step in should the worst occur. Ensure that the vendor has a well-documented disaster recovery plan that will prevent service disruptions. Any provider should be able to help itself as well as its users in the event of a disaster to maintain service.
Lack of Data Redundancy
When your data is at stake, having a reliable way to recover it and maintain business continuity in the event of a disaster is essential. Implementing data redundancy is a way to accomplish this goal. With this strategy, you would keep multiple copies of your data stored in different environments; online and offline. This way, if you experience data loss or a network failure, you’ll be able to restore what was lost from another data storage location.
A common method that organizations use is a 3-2-1 backup strategy. This strategy entails keeping (at least) 3 copies of your data, keeping the data backups in 2 different environments, and keeping 1 copy of the data offsite. In doing this, you have multiple backups in multiple locations and environments, increasing your ability to recover lost data.
One of the main reasons DRaaS is so popular is because it provides the ability to quickly adapt to changing business requirements. When negotiating contracts and Service-Level Agreements (SLAs), be sure to determine what additional resources can be made in the event of a disaster and how quickly they can be activated. It’s also essential to get full disclosure from the vendor with regard to where data and systems are stored, and how resources are federated among other vendors.
Because critical business data may soon be residing in a cloud environment, making sure that data is protected is of greater importance than when it was on site. It’s important to ensure that your DRaaS provider has extensive security resources to guarantee that your data is protected and available. One way to achieve this is to work with a provider that has multiple data centers with redundant storage facilities so critical data can be store in more than one location, as mentioned above.
The point of all of this is not to overwhelm you, but instead, open your eyes to the realities of DraaS risks you may experience. With the vital knowledge you need to adequately prepare, your recovery plan will be comprehensive and well thought out, rather than full of missteps. Consider this information when you start looking for a DRaaS solution as an approach to create the best plan possible.