Every business should have an effective disaster recovery strategy. Important data and applications necessary for the daily functions of an enterprise should be protected. Being able to back this data up and then access it following an emergency can be crucial in ensuring the future of the company. One of the many benefits of cloud computing is that it can be used to augment DR plans, and disaster-recovery-as-a-service offerings often include cloud backup as part of a successful strategy.

Therefore, infrastructure-as-a-service providers offer a distinct solution for DR. An emergency situation like a security breach is expensive, and the cost increases constantly. According to a recent study published by the Ponemon Institute, the average cost of a data breach is $3.8 million, an astounding 23 percent increase since 2013. Enterprises that experience such an event will want to get their applications back up and running as fast as possible. The cloud can help.

Cloud backups can help companies get back online faster after an emergency.Cloud backups can help companies get back online faster after an emergency.

Why replication is a good thing
Adding redundancy to your computing portfolio is a fine place to start when creating a strategy for recovering from a business emergency like a data breach or natural disaster. The cloud can help create this kind of redundant environment where data is replicated and stored off-premises in order to facilitate recovery in the future.

According to Information Systems Security contributor Paul Chisolm, creating redundancy is critical to establishing an efficient DR strategy. Off-premises redundant servers can be advantageous in the event of either a physical emergency or a virtual one. This is where the cloud comes in. Cloud infrastructure providers can give enterprises the computing space they need to create these redundant environments and potentially reduce recovery time in the long run.

“Cloud backups offer companies a way to retrieve their data in an emergency.”

Backing up data in the cloud
Traditional DR plans were costly, time-consuming and prone to error. Cloud backups are becoming more popular as enterprises realize the many advantages, and the market is booming. John Morency, the research vice president of ITL systems, security and risk at Gartner, told TechTarget that in 2014 the research firm found a 60 percent increase in inquiries relating to DR in the cloud. This is for good reason. Cloud backups offer companies a way to retrieve their data in the event that an emergency – like a tornado, in extreme circumstances – takes their original systems permanently or even temporarily offline.

CloudTech contributor David Aislander reported that when enterprises deploy the cloud, they experience lower infrastructure costs, including those associated with equipment acquisition, upgrade and retirement. Traditional DR strategies were expensive, prohibitive and reserved for only the most critical of business processes. However, the cloud has changed that. Cloud infrastructure can give organizations a scalable, hardware-independent environment that can protect their data, instead of physical backups that have to be purchased, stored and maintained.

The cloud offers many advantages for enterprises – successful DR is only one of them. Companies looking to invest in computing infrastructure should take this and other benefits into account.