What is Your Plan if Your Data Centre Burns Down?

If you run a business, you know it is always good to have a plan. You plan for growth, and you also build contingency plans in the event of a disaster.  You may even have a cyber incident response plan that you have to help you recover from a data breach.  Having an incident response plan is great, but does it cover what to do in the event of a natural disaster?

Earthquakes, floods, and fires happen.  While we hope we will never have to deal with any of these disasters in our lifetime, it is good to have a plan should something like this happen.  I remember working in an office many years ago where water had seeped in after a rainstorm, and there was a good inch of water covering the floor.  At that time, we still had tower computer workstations, and those towers sat on the floor. Luckily no one was hurt, and all the computers survived.

Recently, a major European cloud provider lost one of its major data centres to a fire on Wednesday.  French cloud computing company OVHcloud’s Strasbourg, France location was destroyed by the blaze.  The company manages 27 data centres in 19 countries including the US, UK, France, and Australia. Thankfully, no one was harmed by the fire, but it goes to show, even if you have your data stored by another provider, you need to think of contingencies in case of disaster. Or, as the very least, ask your provider what their contingency plan is to restore your data if something happens to their site. In this case, OVHcloud is asking its customers to implement their disaster recover plans.  OVHcloud also have reserve capacity available within its other data centres that will be made available to affected customers.

So, what kind of planning should you be undertaking to prepare for a disaster?  US-CERT (United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team) recommends the 3-2-1 back-plan strategy:

3 – Keep 3 copies of any important file: 1 primary and 2 backups.

2 – Keep the files on 2 different media types to protect against different types of hazards.

1 – Store 1 copy offsite (e.g., outside your home or business facility).

In addition, if your business needs to protect vital data or remain online no matter what, then you need to run your apps and services across zones offered by major cloud providers to limit the fallout from any one disaster. Building in this type of redundancy can help avoid downtime.  Remember disaster recovery can’t just be a document that sits in some untouched file only to surface during a frantic search in a crisis; it needs to be a core part of your company’s strategy. If you would like to talk more about disaster recovery plans, contact Uzado today.