“Business continuity must be higher up companies’ agendas” urges Databarracks

New research from Databarracks has revealed that just a third of UK organisations (35%, in fact) have full confidence in their current disaster recovery plans. At the same time, less than half (49%) have complete confidence in their current back-up solution.

The findings emanate from Databarracks’ annual Data Health Check Survey. Now in its eleventh year, the survey questioned over 400 IT decision-makers in the UK on a series of critical issues relating to IT, security, disaster recovery and business continuity practices.

From a disaster recovery and back-up perspective, the key findings include the following:

*35% of respondents said they;re very confident in their current disaster recovery plans

*Over half (53%) said they are fairly confident, with 8% having concerns

*As for back-up solutions, the proportion of those who are very confident sits at 49%

Peter Groucutt, managing director at Databarracks, commented: “Over the last year, we haven’t seen a huge amount of progress in disaster recovery and back-up confidence. At the same time, the number of cyber threats has continued to grow as a cause of both data loss and downtime. Organisations are lacking something in terms of disaster recovery strategy and the policies, procedures and technology needed to execute the strategy. It’s hard to function confidently as a business if you’re unsure of how well you would cope if disaster struck – whether that’s cyber-related or something else like a power outage.”

Part of the problem – and also a clue to the solution – lies in the current approaches companies are taking: almost a quarter (23%) of respondents don’t have off-site back-ups. 13% of organisations never test back-ups and 42% haven’t tested disaster recovery processes in the last 12 months. It’s these areas that need to be sharpened up to increase confidence in the next 12 months.

Business continuity strategy

Groucutt added: “Frequent testing and having off-site copies of data should be crucial pillars of any disaster recovery and business continuity strategy. This doesn’t need to be expensive or difficult. It’s simply a case of taking the right steps to improve resilience. Find ways to make testing part of your day-to-day operations. If there’s a public transport strike, test your remote working practices. Whenever you need to make updates to IT systems, make a point of testing back-ups. Exercise these processes on a consistent basis and members of staff and the business will always be ready to act when an incident does strike.”

24% of respondents said their biggest worry due to a disaster is lost revenue, while 17% cited reputational damage. Groucutt added: “These concerns are actually very reasonable. This year, we’ve seen disasters cause both, but we can minimise or even eliminate these consequences with good business continuity planning. Conduct a Business Impact Analysis. Determine the potential effects of disruption to critical business operations. Decide what’s important for your business and how you might be affected if something happened to your people, premises, IT or suppliers. Then put plans and workarounds in place to keep the business operational.”

Groucutt concluded: “With a clear vision and strategy you’ll be in a position to tackle any incident with confidence.”

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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