Disaster Recovery Plans for Cloud Environments

IT Consulting

For decades, the information technology (IT) department of a company was responsible for managing the hardware and software of the IT section. In recent times, there are several large clouds which have been distributed to several locations and are connected to central servers where the information is stored. Other times, the server may be very close to the user. When this is the case, it is known as an edge server.

With the help of the IT consulting company, several organizations including banks and insurance companies make use of their personal servers (enterprise clouds). Some organizations decide to use the public cloud, which is also shared by several other companies.

It was also responsible for formulating a disaster recovery plan. This would ensure that in case of a natural calamity like earthquake, fire, flooding or other disasters, the IT systems would remain functional or be restored quickly. Earlier, the entire IT department was also physically controlled by the staff of the business. However, with Cloud and edge computing, many parts of the IT department are not under the direct physical control of the IT department. Hence the DR plan will have to be revised to incorporate these new technologies.

Cloud DR terms

Increasingly businesses are using many vendors for cloud services. There are usually five different vendors. Many businesses do not always check the terms of the cloud service provider. In some cases. the cloud service provider does not offer any guarantees when there is a disaster. Hence it is necessary to work closely with a Cloud service provider and ensure that their terms are incorporated in the disaster plan. The service level agreement (SLA) of each vendor should be checked and backup arrangements should be made. The apps should be checked periodically by the IT department to ensure that they are reliable.

Multiple locations

For cloud and edge computing the computing is taking place at different locations. which may be in different areas. Physical security is also important. because a hacker may access a location which has poor physical security and hack into the network. The DR plan should include a physical inspection of the different locations for the cloud and edge to ensure that they are physically secure. The security arrangements should also be tested periodically to ensure that there is no breach. For cloud computing, the business should be aware of the different locations used by the vendors. and redundancy arrangements

Communicating to customers and vendors

Often when there is a natural disaster. the computers in the office may mostly remain intact if the building has been constructed properly. However, the communication network or cabling will be disrupted due to which the business will not be able to connect to the cloud service or centralized servers. This may force the business to store transaction data offline. so that it can be entered later when communication networks are restored. It is important to ensure that the staff interacting with customers informs me that the problem is only temporary. and services will be restored quickly. If incorrect information is given. the customers may panic close their account with the business.

Updating DR plans. including networks

Many businesses are incorporating more edge and cloud computing applications for greater reliability and convenience. It is important to update the DR plans every time any major change is made in the software applications which are made. Before finalizing any contract for Cloud related services. it is important to ensure that the vendor has a DR plan. It is also advisable to ensure that there is a DR plan for the communication networks used by the business. This will ensure that communication is restored quickly when there is a natural disaster.

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