88 percent of IT professionals say they have lost data for a variety of reasons, according to a recent study from CloudBerry Lab. Common sense would tell you that these IT professionals would be conducting frequent backups and testing their backup solutions. Apparently, that’s not the case. 38 percent of respondents have never tested their solutions to ensure that backed up data can be recovered. 47 percent back up data once per month or less. 32 percent said they either know their data isn’t protected or don’t know what methods are being used to protect their data.

The problem with this startlingly lackadaisical mindset is that data backup solutions are evolving quickly to respond to business needs that are constantly changing. Better solutions and technology are readily available. The backup solution that was put in place years ago probably isn’t meeting today’s needs, which means your ability to recover mission-critical data and applications is questionable at best.

Traditionally, data was backed up in an offsite storage facility that collected dust until an annual test was conducted or disaster struck. Today, modern backup technology allows high volumes of data, applications and even operating systems to be backed up frequently and recovered on demand. Many organizations utilize hybrid solutions that combine on-premises and cloud backup to optimize cost, performance and storage capacity.

Despite the availability of such solutions, only 12 percent of IT professionals believe they can recover from a site disaster within two hours, according to research from TwinStrata. 63 percent predict recovery would take days, while 29 percent would require at least four days.

Needless to say, a complete overhaul of data backup technology and strategies is long overdue for most organizations. When developing a backup plan, there are a number of factors to consider:

What is an acceptable recovery time objective (RTO)? In other words, how long can your organization afford to be offline? Determine the cost per hour in terms of productivity, customer service and lost sales, and additional labor costs for restoring your environment.

What is an acceptable recovery point objective (RPO)? How much data can you afford to lose? For example, if you lost an entire day’s worth of data, how long would it take to re-create essential data across all departments? How much would it cost? Would there be fines or fees for compliance violations or broken service-level agreements?’

Organizations also need to consider the indirect consequences of data loss and downtime, such as reputation damage, negative publicity, customer frustration, and the loss of trust and confidence on the part of customers, business partners and even employees. An effective backup plan will minimize or even eliminate both data loss and downtime by automatically redirecting users to the backup data source when the primary data source is unavailable.

When evaluating backup solutions, tools that are easy to manage and utilize the least amount of storage capacity and bandwidth will help you control costs. Also, make sure your backup solution is built upon mature, reliable infrastructure to ensure that mission-critical data and applications are being protected.
IPC offers on-premises, cloud and hybrid backup solutions with the latest technology to meet the needs of the modern enterprise. Let us help you develop a data backup plan that minimizes the impact of an outage.