Everything you need to know about Backup and Disaster Recovery

Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity

Backup

You sell a product. You provide a service. You give people what they want. But all of that relies on one crucial thing: your business being operational. What happens if your organization loses its data? It is your business’s most critical corporate asset, loss of data can have significant financial consequences — unproductive employees, dissatisfied clients, lost sales, and additional costs.

So let’s stop to think for a moment ….what would you do if disaster struck, and all your important business information and processes vanished into thin air? Do you have a backup solution in place to get your services online quickly after disaster strikes?

We all know a disaster can occur from events like fires, cyclones, failed hardware, power outages, a cyber-attack OR even a disgruntled employee who decides to wipe or steal some data … just because.

The reality is … even though we are aware a disaster can happen, we presume it will happen to someone else. So when disaster strikes, the long term consequences are often more costly than having a backup solution plan in place.

Back ten years ago you were limited to tape as a means of backup. With every server we install we installed a tape backup. Today there are far more choices and options.  With some of the options available today you can minimise your downtime and recovery to minutes. 

Microsoft have a shared responsibility model for backing up and protecting data in Office 365. They have the physical security, they have data storage replication and redundancy and they protect you from natural disasters or data centre issues. 

They do not protect you from users deleting files, human error, malicious activity, hackers or viruses.

Backing up your data is your responsibility.

To be fare Microsoft do offer the following protections (subject to change)

  • Mail: When deleted mail by default can be recovered from the deleted folder for up to 14 days later. Administrators can extend this to 30 days. But if the end user deleted the contents of the deleted folder – the data is gone.
  • SharePoint: items are retained for 93 days from the time you delete them from their original location. They stay in the site Recycle Bin the entire time, unless someone deletes them from there or empties that Recycle Bin. In that case, the items go to the site collection Recycle Bin, where they stay for the remainder of the 93 days
  • OneDrive: Data is stored in the recycle bin for 30 days unless deleted prior

Nortec work with multiple vendors who will do additional backup of your data. This usually involves backing up all incoming and outgoing mail, backing up your SharePoint and Teams data, including deleted files. These are usually charged on a per mailbox basis.

Modern backup tools will allow us to backup to a local NAS device and in addition transfer the back to to our offsite storage. There is a lot of tecnical wizardry that goes on to make it happen. But is it reliable and it works. In today’s environment is is no longer acceptable risk wise to have you company backup located in the same place as your servers. In the the tape backup days, it was still expected that you take a tape off site.

All major backup software will now allow you to backup to offsite storage, MS Azure, AWS or a private cloud solution. Our own SPOR backup solution does this, and is billed at a low monthly fee.

Providers such as Storagecraft, Veeam and Datto, will not only backup your data to the cloud, but included in the subscription is the ability to boot your servers virtually in their private clouds


If you have onsite servers, there is a built in backup tool for all Microsoft Server editions. It backups you to a fixed local disk. It is a good basic option, but if you or your IT Company are using it, it falls very short compared to other solutions on the market. It falls short on backing up Virtual servers, the media to which it can be backed up to, monitoring and reporting.

There are now tools on the market which will backup your physical or virtual server allowing you access to specific data or files as well as allowing you to mount the backup image and gain access to your server quickly. The backup are now usually stored on a Network Attached Storage (NAS) device. Nortec use a number of solutions dependent on what your backup requirements are. The main solutions we support include Veeam, Storagecraft, and Datto. 

Nortec’s SPOR Backup Solution takes bootable snapshots of your servers and stores them on a NAS. These snapshots have a negligible effect on your network and can be run multiple times a day. SPOR then over night backs these images up to our data centre.

Recovery from SPOR can be as simple as restring back from your on premise NAS.

Ask us to determine what solution is best for you

Tape Backup isn’t dead. Tape Backup is still one of the most reliable and cheapest way to store large amounts of data especially when it is for long term retention. Its just not common. We do have some clients for a variety of reasons still running tape backups. While tapes are great for storage the ability to recovery directly from the backup, and recovery of an entire datacenter in to the public cloud is hard to compete with.

What is Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity

Statistics show that on average, over 40% of businesses that do not have a Disaster Recovery Plan go out of business after a major loss like a fire, a break-in, a storm, or sabotage. A Good Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Plan Increases Your Chances of Recovery

There is no reason a temporary setback should turn into a permanent failure – if you protect your organization before disaster strikes. The first step is to create a Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Plan. We can help you get started right away. We will put together a comprehensive plan for your entire organization, considering key components crucial to your recovery, and establish a formal process to be followed to restore your business continuity when a disaster occurs. 

Your Disaster Recovery Plan will be a comprehensive, step-by-step process for you and your staff to follow, covering such items as contacting your local authorities and insurance carriers, re-establishing phone service, sourcing equipment, restoring data, and all essentials needed to restore your organization’s operational capability.

Client Testimonial

“every year we have an exercise where Nortec executes our DR plan and to get our staff and part of the operations centre up and running again”…”This years exercise was done within 24 hours and we had a 100% success rate”

Operations Manager of a Major Sydney Road Infrastructure Companye

How we can help

So let me ask you: how long would it take to get your business back on track after disaster hits?

For more information on the importance of a disaster backup solution and how it can benefit your business, leverage our expertise. Increase your productivity and efficiency while reducing costs and mitigating risk. Contact us today to discuss the many benefits we can provide your business.

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