With the arrival of summer, the temperature gets warmer and the days grow longer, but it also brings the appearance of hurricanes. The Eastern Pacific hurricane season began on May 15 and the Atlantic season started soon after on June 1. With hurricane season well on its way, companies need to start making sure their disaster recovery plans are in order, as high winds and heavy rains can spell major trouble for systems in affected areas, as reported by MSPmentor.

Already this year the Eastern Pacific has seen two Category 4 hurricanes, making this one of the worst starts to a season on record. The National Hurricane Center has measured the Accumulated Cyclone Energy index, which combines the size, speed and duration of a storm into a single number, for this year at about 6 times the average when compared to previous mid-June cycles.

Areas not directly in a storm's path can still be affected by winds and rain, making stronger storms even more dangerous. Hurricane Sandy, for example, caused damage in 24 states, with power outages and flooding being seen as far inland as West Virginia. Facilities in locations not usually associated with hurricanes still need to be prepared for the damage that can be done by strong storms, and putting a reliable disaster recovery plan in place is the best way to reduce network issues.

Enterprise IT departments are increasingly implementing Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service to ensure reliable data protection while reducing costs and complexity. As reported by eWeek, a recent Forrester Research study found that DRaaS adoption has grown, with 19 percent of organizations using the service today and another 22 percent planning to employ a solution. When implementing DRaaS, In its article eWeek offered some suggestions regarding the adoption of DRaaS. Here are several notable points:

  • Run Frequent Tests: Cloud-based DRaaS providers offer IT teams the ability to take advantage of pre-arranged tests and on-demand resources so they are able to assess systems anytime without disrupting business functions and enterprise applications.
  • Consider Who Needs Access: Private clouds, and the DRaaS they provide, allow organizations to implement specified network options to preconfigure use access so additional security risks aren't introduced during an emergency. This also allows for the disaster recovery testing mentioned earlier, so IT departments can be better prepared when the time comes.
  • Implement Tiered Data Storage: When employing a cloud disaster recovery plan, consider storing data in a tiered configuration. All applications are not created equal, and they shouldn't be stored in the same way. Tiered storage allows IT managers to prioritize how frequently each application is replicated, the order in which applications are recovered after a disaster, and the retention of the recovery points. This process ensures greater efficiency and better continuity of business processes.
  • Ensure True Recovery: Make sure that enterprise data isn't just being backed up, but will truly be recovered in the event of a disaster. True DR is about limiting downtime so business can continue to run as usual. To do this, ensure that processes are in place for data to be recovered quickly and applications will be able to be up and running in a reasonable amount of time.