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Five reasons why the cloud can strengthen your disaster recovery plan

Studies show that many companies are migrating data to the cloud to make disaster recovery easier and cheaper.

More and more organizations have come to realize that disaster recovery (DR) planning needs to be a core component of their operations. With workforces distributed to an extent nobody could have predicted, the threat of cyberattacks has skyrocketed. Meanwhile, natural disasters such as fire and floods persist, and hardware is still vulnerable to failure. Many technology providers have seen DR business increase rapidly, and much of that involves helping organizations utilize the cloud to protect their data. Here’s why…     

Disaster Recovery Before the Cloud
Back before many organizations moved their entire networks to the cloud, all DR required was building a remote DR site, and many large companies still operate their own remote data centers for storage and recovery. Data entered at the primary business location is simultaneously entered on servers in the remote location, often through processes known as synchronous or asynchronous mirroring. In the event of a disaster at the primary location, a failover switches operations to the secondary location. 

In that scenario, there are considerable upfront costs since hardware and software must be purchased and brought online. Managing and maintaining the remote data recovery site then requires staff support because DR and data protection involve a set of hands-on tasks, which can be resource-intensive.

Quest CTA DisasterRecoveryWorksheet

Disaster Recovery Since the Cloud
Cloud-based DR, does not require building a secondary physical site. Your critical data and applications can be stored in the cloud, which becomes your secondary DR site. The processes necessary to avoid disruptions, or to retrieve data and get everything functioning and back on line, can be automated. This means you can ensure business continuity.

Rather than incur a large capital expense, cloud-based DR services can be purchased for a monthly fee, and you pay only for the cloud computing services you actually use.

Many small and medium-sized organizations are finding Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) to be a cost-effective alternative to building and maintaining off-site infrastructure. Many enterprise-level organizations, even those with their own off-site data storage locations, are incorporating cloud-based DR. The best DRaaS solutions allow you to achieve Recovery Time Objective (RTO) and Recovery Point Objective (RPO) of less than 15 minutes.

Utilizing the cloud gives you the flexibility to move data to and from whichever cloud provider serves your business needs. This on-demand portability makes data migration simple, enables you to deploy IT resources strategically, and allows you to respond quickly to catastrophic failure.

To summarize, here are 5 reasons to consider incorporating the cloud in your disaster recovery plan:

  1. Cloud DR can save you money.
    Since you can tailor your data storage costs specifically to your business, you can ensure your operational security without wasting a dime.
  2. Utilizing the cloud for DR is secure.
    As technologies and processes have evolved, cloud recovery is now generally more secure than comparable on-site solutions.
  3. Cloud DR has become very fast.
    Deployment, management, failover, failback, and testing can be completely automated.
  4. The cloud is elastic.
    You can begin by paying only for fractional copies of your on-site workloads and, in the event of disaster, scale up to a full-service package in a few minutes to a couple of hours, depending on the size of your operation.
  5. Cloud-based DR services are completely reliable.
    The providers of cloud infrastructure have spent a lot of money to build a global network of availability domains and data centers. No matter the size of your business or organization, you can leverage this secure network.

Here is more evidence that the cloud has fast become a secure environment. The public cloud services market has grown to more than $250 billion, and a survey released by the International Data Group found that 77% of IT decision-makers plan to migrate to the cloud in the coming year. Business leaders around the world have done their due diligence and decided that this was the correct move.

Two Additional Disaster Recovery Considerations
I’ll leave you with two quick thoughts. The first is a question you need to ask yourself if you have decided to consider the cloud for strengthening your DR plan: “How am I going to get there?” To do this, you’ll want to partner with a firm who can help facilitate your journey to a data management platform that’s simple, flexible, and reliable.

Second, the easiest and best way to learn exactly what you need to know about cloud disaster recovery services is to engage a provider who will walk thru the process leveraging demos, workshops, and professional services.

I hope you found this information helpful. As always, contact us anytime about your technology needs.


Meet the Author
Tim Burke is the President and CEO of Quest. He has been at the helm for over 30 years.
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