A business owner’s worst nightmare is an event that can completely shut down their operations. It could be a flood, a fire or some other natural disaster. But it could be something a lot simpler – IT failure. If your computer systems crash, and the business technology you rely on is inaccessible, you could be in deep trouble if you’re not well-prepared. Let’s look at what a catastrophic failure is like and how you can avoid it.

Catastrophic Failure – the Basics

We live in the digital age and rely more on computers every year. Businesses are especially dependent on technology, and when it fails things can come to a grinding halt. Think about what you use your digital systems for in your business: data storage, communications, customer service and relations, staff details, general administration and more. That’s why a problem that puts your business continuity at risk can have such disastrous effects.

It can be really frightening when something happens that seriously compromises the integrity of your computer systems. We’re not talking about potential threats, or problems that cause temporary downtime and affect only one part of your system. We’re talking about catastrophic problems. The reality of technology is that even when it’s brilliantly designed, properly implemented, well-managed and diligently maintained, IT failures can occur. That risk can never be entirely eliminated. What you can do is to make sure you’ve done everything you can so that you can recover quickly if catastrophic failure occurs.

If you end up in a situation where your systems are unusable, you’ll probably be unable to carry out most, or even all, of your business operations. What it means is that the event that’s caused the outage is bigger than the risk mitigation plans you’ve implemented. There are various things you can do to manage some of the more obvious threats.

  • • Make sure you have two separate power sources, so if one fails you have an alternative and can keep going
  • • Use uninterruptible power supplies
  • • Choose vendors who offer high availability systems
  • • Ensure that building maintenance is always carried out

These common-sense measures could save you from catastrophic IT failure, but there’s no guarantee that the catastrophe won’t originate from some other source. Another thing you can do is to virtualize your IT infrastructure. In that scenario, all your data is held offsite, so disasters like fire and floods can’t touch it. But even if you do this, if you have a prolonged power outage or your onsite hardware is no longer functioning for some other reason, the problem is still there – because you won’t be able to access the servers. It’s not a failsafe solution, but cloud computing is still an important strategy in case of catastrophic hardware failure, especially if staff can work remotely from other premises.

It’s not just hardware failure that can bring on a catastrophe scenario and ruinous downtime. Your systems can become unusable if you fall victim to hackers and malware. Even user error can potentially shut you down. Staff training is one essential measure to make sure your computer security isn’t breached. Employees need to know what a phishing attack looks like, why password security is essential, and how to recognize computer issues that might interrupt the functioning of your business.

It’s also important to appreciate just how important your data is, and how difficult your life will be if you can’t access it or, even worse, lose it. Software and hardware failure can corrupt your data, and it can be lost in transit, stolen or encrypted in a ransomware attack, amongst other nightmare scenarios. Protecting data should be a top priority for any organization.

Technology should work to help businesses expand and thrive. No business should find itself facing ruin because it’s failed, for whatever reason. That’s where the IT professionals at Quikteks come in. We work to ensure that you enjoy business continuity. We provide monitoring and management of your IT infrastructure, your network and associated resources. We can help you with staff training and advise you on policies and strategies to ensure best practices and prevent downtime. We can assist with purchasing decisions and procurement.

If you want to safeguard your operations and prevent catastrophic failure, we can help you create a business continuity plan that will help you get up and running again, no matter what crisis has affected your IT infrastructure. For more information, call Quikteks today at (973) 882-4644.