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Solar and Wind Power pushed by new flow battery technology pushes DRP and BCP horizons

Disaster Recovery & Business Continuity horizons pushed by new battery backup up solution.

Battery BackupSan Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) has implemented a flow battery project that will store up to 2 megawatts of electricity -- enough to power 1,000 homes for four hours.

They are using a vanadium redox flow (VRF) battery system that was installed by a Japan-based company.  The system will store renewable energy from solar panels and release it when resources are in high demand during peak business hours.

This is the first flow battery system operating in the U.S., they are testing to prove its economic value and potential use on the electric grids.  From a business side this is the first step in a truly secure power source that can be used in disaster recovery and business continuity planning.

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DDoS attacks have C-Level executives in fear

DDoS - Disaster Recovery, Business Continuity, and Security issues

Recent DDoS (distributed denial-of-service) attacks have C-Level executives on edge, fearing that they might be caught in the next denial-of-service campaign.

Unfortunately, network outages don’t need to be instigated by malicious outside forces in order to occur. Configuration choices, new releases, or the cumulative impact of changes made over many years can lead to catastrophic failures as well.  Examples of this are common.  Just last summer, Southwest Airlines experienced a router failure that caused the cancellation of about 2,300 flights in four days. The router took down several Southwest Airlines systems and the outage continued uninterrupted for about 12 hours when the backup systems didn’t work as expected.

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Amazon hit with an 11 hour business interruption

Disaster Recovery Business Continuity plans need to cover short term outages

Amazon Web Services (AWS) had a system failure on Tuesday that affected numerous websites and apps. The problem had lasted for approximately 11 hours and caused problems for  websites and online services throughout the day.

AWS had reported on its Service Health Dashboard that its engineers were working on the problem, which affected websites including Netflix, Reddit and Adobe.

The Associated Press reported that its own photos, webfeeds and other online services were also affected. Mashable tweeted that it was also struggling.

Disaster Types

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Business continuity media communication

Business Continuity media communicationBusiness Continuity - Rarely do Computer fires prompt a 911 call.  Those events are so unusual that when it does happen, local media will make note of it.

To survive an incident such as a business interruption, security breach, or a product recall, organizations need more than a successful communication strategy – they need an incident communication plan.

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Business Interruption Life Cycle

Business Interruption Life Cycle

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A business interruption has a life cycle; that is, it starts small and could potentially become a disaster of epic proportion, depending on its duration. The longer an interruption is, the more that the company’s operations are affected. Your organization’s response should shift as an incident evolves from threat to emergency to crisis to disaster. It is one thing to say access to contract data isn’t essential for a day or two, but what about a week or two? This is why it’s important to protect more than just data. Now that you know what processes are critical to the operation of your business, you can consider threats according to their impact on those critical processes. To help you mitigate impact to your core processes, your plan should address three key phases:

  • Business Continuity Response — these are the steps you take immediately to sustain your core processes, your primary business priorities
  • Disaster Recovery Response — these are the steps you take to extend your core processes indefinitely and addresses your secondary priorities
  • Restoration Planning Response — these are the steps you take to restore your business to its pre-incident level
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Ransomware and Disaster Recovery Planning

Disaster Recovery Plan - Business Continuity planning for ransomware

How to beat ransomware: prevent, don't react

What would happen if you were hit with ransomware today?

When it comes to ransomware, once your files are encrypted, there's not much you can do - besides cut your losses or pay up. And even if you do pay up, there's a chance you won't get your files back. It's important to prevent ransomware attacks from happening in the first place.

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Top 10 Backup failures made by CIOs

Failure is not an option when considering disaster recovery and business continuity. Only when a backup is needed and then found that it is lacking or missing do many CIOs, IT Managers, and users appreciate the complexity  of the issue.

  1. Backing up only desktops and ignoring laptops, tablets, smartphone and other mobile devices
  2. Thinking that all that matters are mainframe or data center data bases
  3. Not understanding the differences in various deduplication solutions
  4. Not understanding what impact the backup processes have on users
  5. Not having a good grasp of the security implications due to disparate backup files
  6. Focusing only on what is needed today and ignoring future ramifications
  7. Not having a robust deployment solution defined
  8. Understanding the total cost of ownership for a solution or lack of a complete backup and security solution
  9. Ignoring BYOD implications and complications
  10. Not understanding he implications of the backup solution for disaster recovery and business continuity

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Disaster Recovery and Security top blog topics

Disaster Recovery Plan TemplateDisaster Recovery and Security top blog topics

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Brush fires cause major business interruptions

Brush fires cause major business interruptions

Apocalyptic images came out of Canada where the fire in Alberta were so big that it's was measured in square miles and not acres.

Business Interruption Life Cycle

As much as a quarter of the country's oil production was halted by the fire, raising concerns about the effect on the Canadian economy. Assume those shutdowns last for two weeks, Canada would subtract 0.5 percent from May GDP (in 2011, approximately 40 percent of Slave Lake, Alberta, a community of 7,000, was also lost to fire).

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Disaster Recovery Misconceptions

Disaster Recovery -  What are the major misconceptions when a disaster occurs with IT systems? Can your systems can not support your company's day-to-day operations?

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The major misconception is that a backup recovery plan is all that you need.  At Janco Associates that is not enough.  We have found that most companies are really not prepared.  Files can be restored but it does no good if they do have facilities for their staffs.

  1. Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Top 10 “Disaster Recovery and business continuity are all about being ready for everything.  The question that every IT manager and CIO has to answer every day...
  2. Google data center security & disaster recovery  This is a great video on physical security as well as the the software security. This is a great primer which all CIOs and Data...
  3. Meeting ISO 27031 Requirements Meeting ISO 27031 Requirements ISO 27031 The ISO Standard defines the Information and Communication Technology (ITC) Requirements for Business Continuity (IRBC) program that supports the...
  4. Will your disaster recovery provider be in business when you need them? Disaster Recovery plans that depend on outsourcers face significant additional risk What if your were in Florida and the Hurricane season was in full swing...
  5. IBM Business Continuity Plan Services  Business Continuity Services Video Business continuity video is good overview of what IBM thinks about this...

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Distaster Recovery and Security current articles

Distaster Recovery and Security current articles

 Disaster Recovery, Business Continuity and Security articles of interest:

  1. 10 step security implementation 10 step security implementation 10 step security implementation process: Make security an executive directive – The driver for security needs to be at the CEO and...
  2. Top 10 Reasons Compliance of Business Continuity Fails Testing is key to business continuity compliance with ISO 22301 Compliance and business continuity management are closely inter-related – ISO 22301 is just one of...
  3. 10 best practices for Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity 10 best practices for Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Most CIOs and management executives all say they have disaster recovery and business continuity under control...
  4. Security Manual Addresses PCI Compliance IssuesPCI Compliance Security Issues What’s needed for PCI compliance is a comprehensive, high-quality security policy. To that end Janco has a security policy template available for...
  5. Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Template Update Released Janco released Version 8 of its Disaster Recovery Business Continuity Template. It now includes 17 electronic forms and a new Business Impact Analysis tool Janco...

 

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13TB solid-state drive will alter backup models

A 13TB solid-state drive is now available for $13,000.  Most SSDs today have no more than 6TB of storage, and the 13TB drive more than doubles that capacity.

As the price for this drops, disaster recovery and business continuity plans will have to be updated to reflect this new cost effective technology.

Question that need to be answered are:

  • Is our data safe in transit and at rest?
  • What prevents hackers from gaining access to our data?
  • Is our data properly handled, stored, and deleted?
  • Who can access our data?
  • What are the benchmark measurements?
  • Is our data backup strategy compliant?
  • Will our recovery be successful?
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DRP needs to consider the public cloud

Cloud DR BCDRP needs to consider the public cloud

DRP needs to consider the public cloud - the public cloud is the norm.  A recent survey shows that use of the cloud is no longer new or specialized; it now is a solid part of the IT arsenal that most enterprises have already established as a core resource.

If the cloud is not so strange anymore, why isn't everyone doing it?

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Solar Flares could impact business operations

Solar Flares could impact business operations

The Earth's magnetic field protects the planet from most of the effects of solar eruptions, powerful flares can affect the Earth's atmosphere in the layer where GPS and communication signals travel. The flares can also affect satellites and spacecraft.

If that happens, the solar flares could shut down mobile and high-frequency communications used by the military and airlines, cause GPS errors and even flood electrical power lines with extra current.

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Data Backbone of Disaster Recovery

DRP Security TemplateData is the backbone of every organization. No matter the business, industry, or size, reliable data access is essential to operations. As that data continues to grow exponentially, it is important to have a backup and recovery strategy that meets current business needs and has the flexibility to grow and change.

 

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Protecting your data is vital to the survival and growth of your business. You must keep your systems and employees up and running - and productive - even as fast backup and restore processes are being completed. And, should a "worst-case scenario" occur, being prepared with an appropriate disaster recovery plan is essential.

 

The Disaster Recovery Plan (DRP) can be used as a Disaster Planning template for any size of enterprise. The Disaster Recovery template and supporting material have been updated to be Sarbanes-Oxley and HIPAA compliant.

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Reasons why an Incident Communication Plan is required

Reasons why an Incident Communication Plan is required

Incident Communication PlanThe reason to have an Incident Communication is so that there are well-defined roles and responsibilities that enhance collaboration across the various levels of your crisis management team. It also ensures that no information is miscommunicated or lost during the heat of the crisis. It can remove the risk of failing to communicate effectively when you are being pulled in multiple different directions.

The specific objective of this incident communication plan is to define who will provide key communications during a crisis including content, recipients, schedule, method of delivery, frequency, and priority of the communication. By outlining a communication plan in advance, the business is better able to

  • Communicate the effects and status of a crisis for employees, associates, suppliers and customers,
  • Reduce the impact of bad publicity, maintain customer service, bolster relations with vendors and
  • Address the concerns of other key stakeholders

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Top 10 Backup Best Practices

10 Backup Best Practices - Rules of the Road for CIOs and DR/BC Managers Top 10 Backup Best Practices - Many CIOs want to improve their ability to recover from system failures and data loss, especially to protect themselves from -… Continue reading

Question that need to be answered are:

  • Is our data safe in transit and at rest?
  • What prevents hackers from gaining access to our data?
  • Is our data properly handled, stored, and deleted?
  • Who can access our data?
  • What are the benchmark measurements?
  • Is our data backup strategy compliant?
  • Will our recovery be successful?
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Managing backup and recovery in today's environment is a multi-dimensional challenge with both near and long term business requirements. Recent technological developments in disk backup have had a positive impact on short term data retention requirements (see also BYOD policy).

Disaster Recovery Security Cloud DRP Security Incident Communication Policy Security Audit Program
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US lucks out and does not make list of most likely terrorist attacks

Disaster Recovery Planning

No US city made the top 100 possible sites for a terrorist attack.  Most of the cities that made the list are in the Middle East. 

Paris is the only western city to make the list at 97. The risk level in Paris is representative of a wider trend for Western countries, including Belgium, Canada and Australia, where key urban centres face substantially higher threat levels than elsewhere in the country, in part due to the significant PR value attached to such high profile targets by militant Islamist groups.

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64 cities have been categorised as extreme risk in the Global Alerts Dashboard (GAD). Based on the intensity and frequency of attacks in the 12 months following February 2014, combined with the number and severity of incidents in the previous five years, six cities in Iraq top the ranking. Over this period, the country's capital, Baghdad, suffered 380 terrorist attacks resulting in 1,141 deaths and 3,654 wounded, making it the world’s highest risk urban centre, followed by Mosul, Al Ramadi, Ba'qubah, Kirkuk and Al Hillah.

Outside of Iraq, cities rated as at extreme risk include Kabul, Afghanistan (13th most at risk), Mogadishu, Somalia (14th), Sana’a, Yemen (19th) and Tripoli, Libya (48th). However, with investment limited in conflict and post-conflict locations, it is the risk posed by terrorism in the primary cities of strategic economies, such as Egypt, Israel, Kenya, Nigeria and Pakistan that has the potential to threaten business and supply chain continuity.

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Disaster Incident Communication Plan

When a natural disaster strikes, the majority of the chaos and confusion that arises comes from a lack of open channels of communication. In both relief efforts and the businesses struggling to get back on track, communication is absolutely vital. Inside this guide, we’ll take a look at how the cloud offers a resilient communications solution that won’t fail when you need it the most.

Inside Incident Communication Plan Policy, you’ll learn how cloud based communications can save your business in the face of disaster. While even a relatively minor disruption can wreak havoc on premise-based communications, it only takes one employee with internet access to keep your business running with cloud-based communications. Read on to learn how to ensure your cloud provider is prepared and how to formulate a plan to get your business up and running in minutes should a disaster strike.

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Disaster recovery template minimizes the risks associated with business disruptions

Disasters strike when companies least expect them. Some - like massive storms - give you more warning. But in either case, it’s a real problem if disaster stops the day-to-day operations of your business.

Forces of nature, malicious acts, or even a simple human error can have a long-lasting negative effect on your business. How can you upgrade your disaster preparedness given how business distruption an data loss will affect your organization?

Are you prepared?

  • Revenue loss from the inability to conduct business
  • Lost customer trust or confidence
  • Financial penalties for violated SLAs
  • Legal or financial penalties for compliance lapses
  • Excessive recovery and repair costs for lost systems and data

The Disaster Recovery Business Continuity template has been purchase by over 2,500 enterprise world wide in both the public and private sectors. To see the distribution of our customer base click here.

Disaster Recovery Security Cloud DRP Security Incident Communication Policy 
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