The Dangers of Data Loss

Each year, as the Atlantic hurricane season tactics many companies have a nagging understanding that they’re in danger because of a devastating “Black Swan ” occasion. Black Swan events are a continuous source of danger in countries like Florida where several households are subject to disturbance as a result of coastal storms. This threat is especially acute for companies that are based on the storage of online data if there’s a possibility their critical information could be corrupted or lost. However, the danger from Black Swan events is not confined to Florida, nor can it be restricted to large scale tumultuous events such as hurricanes.The black swan concept or concept of black swan events refers to a tumultuous event which comes as a surprise, has a significant impact, and can be inappropriately rationalized after the fact with the benefit of hindsight. The expression is based on an early expression that presumed black swans didn’t exist, however, the expression has been rewritten after dark swans were discovered in the wild. Consider the following situation…

As the transformer burned, the soot entered the buildings ventilation shafts and quickly spread toxic soot throughout the building. The building was so badly contaminated that it took 13 years and over $47 million to clean before the building could be reentered or used. Because of the nature of the fire, the building and its contents, including all paper records, computers, and personal effects of the people who worked there, were not recoverable. This type of event would be irrecoverable for many businesses.” – Operations Due Diligence, Published by McGraw Hill

What impact would a catastrophic hurricane which influenced an whole area or a localized tumultuous event such as a fire have about the functioning of your company? Can you endure that type of disturbance or reduction? Since the reliance on online data has increased in almost every sort of organization, so has the danger that loss of the information could interrupt the performance of the company and even lead to its complete collapse. In reaction to such dangers, there’s been an evolution from the procedures used to mitigate those dangers since the quantity of online data has continued to rise. Initially, the idea of Disaster Recovery (DR) appeared as a reduction plan that concentrated on the retrieval of critical data following a tumultuous event by providing the company the capacity to restore disrupted IT operations.

Disaster Recovery (DR) entails a group of policies and processes that permit the recovery of critical company data and permits the IT infrastructure to be restored to a previous condition. DR was initially regarded as the domain of the IT department that had been given responsibility for mitigating the threat. To decrease the threat, system copies were scheduled regularly and competitive DR programs that comprised server cold start processes and data copies were implemented.

The aim was to reestablish the infrastructure to the previous point where the information were backed up (in the moment, typically on tape). The acceptable DR practices in the time let the IT system to be rebooted while the facility electricity was eventually restored… Unless it had been in a flood zone or the off-site backup storage centre had also been affected. In any situation, the performance of this facility could potentially be disrupted for a certain time period and the information recovery was also possibly at risk based on where copies were saved.

Now let us roll up the calendar forward… As technology evolved so did the Disaster Recovery strategies, which result in new theories that evolved into the prerequisites for a Business Continuity solution for a way of mitigating risk. Nevertheless regarded as the domain of IT, as technologies transferred towards alternatives such as shadow servers, dispersed data places and higher speed bulk data transmission using remote connectivity. Data no longer needed to be “recovered”, it only had to be linked into dispersed locations in which it might be remotely accessed. Business Continuity mitigated the chance of information reduction and allowed a company to recuperate far more quickly and economically out of a Black Swan event since its servers never went completely down.

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