When you think about disaster planning, your first thoughts probably focus on evacuation routes, personal safety, and having enough food and water to survive in the immediate aftermath of a disaster. As a business owner, however, here’s another disaster to consider: data loss.
Yes, a computer or server crash qualifies as a disaster. It can severely impact your business, potentially putting you out of business. Below are three common computer network disasters and steps you can take to ensure your business survives unscathed.
In New Jersey and New York, storms are common. While lightning can definitely knock the power out, it’s not just storms you have to worry about. Power outages can happen randomly. Even an overloaded circuit could cause an outage. Not only do power outages disrupt your business and prevent you from accessing your data and systems, they can destroy your valuable data and fry your hardware. Likewise, a power surge can do the same.
To protect your network from power surges and outages, you’ll need a two-part plan:
1. Use surge protectors and uninterruptible power supplies (UPS) — An uninterruptible power supply provides backup power to the item connected to it, such as a server, should the power go out. This piece of hardware buys you time, allowing you to save your work, protect your data, and safely shut down the system. At a minimum, your server should be connected to a UPS. We highly recommend connecting all computers on the network to a UPS as well.
2. Back up your data — We recommend backing up your data to the cloud where it’s readily available should a power failure cause harm to your network. Quikteks’ Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) solution protects your business from data loss. For example, if the power goes out, your network’s data is safe and sound in the cloud where you can recover it once the power is back on.
You may not realize it, but passwords can cause data disasters, too. For example, if your employees use weak or easy-to-guess passwords such as 1234, your entire network is at risk. Hackers, backdoor Trojans, and ransomware could wreak havoc on your system, deleting, corrupting, or locking your data in the process.
Another password-related scenario that can hamper productivity involves high level passwords that only one key person knows. What happens if your IT administrator goes on vacation and there’s a network emergency requiring his or her password? What if that person dies?
There are instances where, while you still want to enforce the highest security standards possible, you need a means of accessing your company’s own passwords. Quikteks offers a secure password storage service to ensure both strong passwords and emergency access so that passwords aren’t lost should you lose a key employee temporarily or permanently.
In addition to implementing these password solutions, Quikteks can monitor your network for signs of attempted login attempts.
When natural disasters, like floods, hurricanes, or fires, or not-so-natural disasters, like chemical spills or terrorism, strike, your team must be ready to react appropriately. The time to plan for these disasters is now. Make sure you have an evacuation plan in place and conduct regular drills so that everyone knows how to protect themselves. Personal safety is priority number one, making it crucial to assign designated leaders to help ensure the safety of your team.
You’ll also want measures in place to protect your business data. Again, now’s the time to plan for these disasters. For example, do you use tape backups? It doesn’t do any good to have a tape backup on site if the entire building burns to the ground. Thus, someone must be responsible for taking the tape backups offsite each day for safekeeping.
Likewise, in the midst of a disaster, the last thing you want is for anyone to risk their life to retrieve a tape backup. A much better solution is to use our Backup and Disaster Recovery solution, which automatically backs up your data safely in the cloud. With this solution, should any type of disaster strike, your data can be restored once the dust settles.
For more information about preventing a data catastrophes or identifying potential threats to your system infrastructure, give us a call at (973) 882-4644.