Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery, do small businesses need it?

As amazing as technology is, it’s not perfect. Systems sometimes fail, hackers find loopholes or employees make mistakes. All these events impact businesses small and large no matter the industry. Which is why BCDR (Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery) is something businesses cannot afford to disregard.  
 
While recent news stories have covered data breaches and failures impacting business giants and government bodies, the reality is small and medium-size businesses have been suffering as well. A recent survey by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (which included businesses of all shapes and sizes micro 1 man bands all the way up to large enterprises) – found 32% of businesses experienced a security breach and suffered an average financial loss of £4,180. To top off that, 48% stated they experienced at least one breach or attack a month and the average cost for charities who lost data or assets as a result of a breach was £9,470.  

While we hate to be the bearer of bad news, we hope this blog will help shed some light on why you should invest in BCDR and the common mistakes made by businesses who already have it.  

What is it? 

BCDR is a broad subject covering, not only technical solutions but also the policies and procedures that a company puts in place to deal with a “Disaster”.  

In an IT sense it means ensuring that not just your data is protected, but also your systems so should the worst happen you can actually get back to work.

Our BCDR product protects one or more of a businesses’ servers and allows us to run virtual copies of them in the event of a hardware failure or if the system becomes unavailable for any reason. 

How does it affect small businesses? 

In our experience, a lot of small businesses don’t think about the full impact losing their IT systems, it can and will affect reputation, customers, staff or even profit margins. 

While larger companies often have teams in place to plan for these outcomes, small business owners and their staff need to handle everything with their own two hands. This often results in stopping all business operations until an issue is resolved. The best defence is obviously preventing it from happening in the first place, but next up is ensuring you have a tried and tested process is in place to reduce your recovery time.  

The impact of an issue is especially severe if your business holds highly sensitive data about your customers that you are trusted to protect.  

Common errors businesses make

  • Thinking it wont happen to them. Most data recovery situations are the result of one of two things, employee action (unfortunately not always accidental) or power issues damaging equipment.
  • Not planning for the worst: by planning for typical issues, you can react quickly and ensure that disruption is kept to a minimum 
  • Only backing up: some companies backup their files but do not put a mechanism in place to recover from a failed server
  • Not testing backups: a backup is only good if it works. Sadly, its common for a business to discover that their backups have not been working at the very time they need them. A seemingly minor incident has just become a serious issue.

So, if you’re a small business owner who hasn’t really considered how your business would function in the case of a disaster, just give it another thought. If you’re not sure what you need to consider as you look through the various options available, read through our blog on picking the best backup for a little guidance or give us a call. If you are currently using BCDR in your business but feel it might not be performing at the level you need it to be, get in touch! We will happily help you to ensure your business is as prepared and secure as it can be.

What topics do you want to know more about?

As a community interest company, we aim to support local businesses and provide them with the best service possible, so they can focus on running their business and not on the IT helping them to do so. If there are any IT issues your company is facing or areas you would like some more information on let us know via [email protected], so we can keep this blog up-to-date and relevant to the needs of our local businesses.

If you require some personal advice on your businesses IT support needs, get in touch!