The most pressing concern for businesses operating in the Cloud is effective and timely Disaster Recovery. There are scores of threats like ransom ware attack, human errors, network failures and software vulnerabilities which makes your systems susceptible to potential disasters. This is why DR has become one of the top essential services for enterprises of almost all domains and sizes.
Designing a cloud-based Disaster Recovery plan
A well documented recovery plan starts with building a thorough DR strategy. It is in this step that you can understand the company’s ability of tolerating a disaster. This is where the goals and procedures of disaster response get documented. The tools to be used to get the company online are established at this stage. A robust recovery plan should include the following:
• Risk assessment analysis
• Analysis of business impact
• Regular updating and testing of the DR plan
Risk assessment and Business Impact analysis
1. Recovery Objectives:
Disaster Recovery has two measurements: Recovery Point Objective (RPO) and Recovery Time Objective (RTO). The maximum time which a business can withstand a loss of data is its RPO. The time taken from a system getting affected, to its full recovery is its RTO. It is essential for a company to be aware of its RPO and RTO. In other words, a company should know exactly how long it can sustain itself in the face of a disaster, without severely losing out traffic and business.
2. Response Team:
The individuals who would make the DR response team, gets identifies in this stage. The team ideally should include team leaders such as the CEO and CTO. It should also include the system administrators as they play the major role in bringing systems back to normalcy.
3. Resource Documentation:
The next step is proper documentation of the available resources. The list should ideally include network connections, system requirement, rate of usage of the systems, details of the OS and running applications, as well as the location of all of the stored and backup data.
4. DR location selection:
Using the resources provided by AWS, Azure or Google Cloud, backup sites can be run, giving you a failover site that can be ready to act instantaneously. Disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) is one of Azure’s most important offerings. With Azure site recovery, automated recovery response keeps the company safe. Google’s disaster recovery focuses on setting up the process in several steps.
Testing and updating the cloud-based DR plan
After the plan is completely drawn and personnel are assigned with responsibilities, it is time to test whether the plan actually works or not in the face of a catastrophe. Another reason behind this step is ensuring that a disaster never happens and the system is equipped to deal with it. In other words it means that the plan needs to be tested, thoroughly and repeatedly, multiple times. Also, there should be regular updates and constant attention should be paid towards the deployment of those updates.
1. Testing is essential
Every part of the DR plan should be fault tested. Failover tests to backup sites should be performed once every quarter. These tests won’t just give an assessment of the health of the sites. This step gives the opportunity to see whether the personnel are appropriate in the face of the catastrophe. If any changes are required in the structure of the recovery plan, this is the stage to make them.
2. Regular update routine
Testing gives an idea of how the DR system will perform in a crisis, but those elements need to run at the latest build to ensure that your business isn’t vulnerable to the latest threats. Patching and updating should all be scheduled to automatically bring the systems up-to-date with the latest fixes.
Another important area to keep up-to-date is the DR plan documentation. These documents should have details about how every aspect of the DR plan behaved during each test and give accurate assessments for the performance of team members. This information should be used to adequately adapt to any weaknesses that might have been discovered during the test or actual disaster event.
The two phases to building your disaster recovery plan in this blog is just an outline you need to design an effective way to recover from debilitating events. Although this guide is a good way to start, it isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution.
The DR should be tailor-made to specific response for specific needs. Also, an extremely expensive cloud platform might not be a suitable for a host of businesses. Turning to disaster recovery solutions offered by AWS, Google Cloud, and Azure is one way to reduce the costs of on-premises disaster infrastructure. The best approach in this scenario is to turn to trusted third-party vendors for further cost-cutting and disaster recovery capabilities in the cloud, such as Vareli Tecnac.
See Also - Cloud Storage Vs Cloud Backup