When Disaster Strikes, Look to Cloud Disastery Recovery – DRaaS
With high-profile data breaches such as those that hit Target and Sony, cyber threats and business continuity have been under the spotlight over the last few years. In Target’s case, there was a significant breach involving millions of customer credit and debit card records, and the attackers persisted undetected for almost two weeks. In Sony’s case, the attackers had clear intent to gain repeated entry, extract information, and be destructive to the point of completely erasing data from Sony’s cloud servers. In both cases, having an efficient, secure, and reliable data storage and disaster recovery system in place could have helped prevent the severe damage inflicted on both of these companies.
Whether it’s a data breach such as these, or a power outage, hard drive failure, storm or other disaster – restoring your service in the case of a disaster should be a paramount concern for any organization today. These events and the cloud as an enabler have brought to light the evolving trend of Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS). In this article, we will discuss the enterprise gaps that are commonly seen today, and provide DRaaS several approaches.
The IT Disconnect
When asked, most executives will say that they trust their workforce, and are confident that their IT infrastructure is ready in case of a disaster. In most cases, these same executives are also confident in the organization’s tools that are in place to prevent service disruptions and data loss.
However, try and ask the IT manager or one of the IT team members of your organization, and they will probably be far less confident. This common perception gap is driven by the simple fact that mid-level IT practitioners are more attuned to the details and day-to-day of what’s happening with their IT systems and infrastructure, and as a result have more knowledge to assume potential deficit issues.
At the end of the day, both parties have the responsibility to create a robust environment for both their users and regulators. And when it comes to finding a solution to plan your enterprise IT environment uptime strategy, traditional IT leaders struggle with the pain points of implementation, including the skills required and the high costs involved. These costs include running periodic tests, continuous monitoring of the cloud-based disaster recovery site and overall uptime management and optimization as the service evolves.
DRaaS to the Rescue
A common challenge for IT personnel is that their traditional DR solutions don’t offer adequate recovery time objectives (RTOs). In fact, in a recent survey of IT executives, one third of respondents said that their RTO was more than 12 hours, with only 21 percent claiming it is two hours or less and 46 percent saying it’s between two hours and 12 hours. Veteran enterprise IT personnel know that there will always be some manual initiation of processes, and in reality it always takes hours to restore a service to full functionality.
With DRaaS, you can replicate and host physical or virtual servers, to provide fast and seamless failover when disaster strikes. The DRaaS advantage lies in its ability to provide complete rapid cloud data recovery services. These services range from site and transactional restoration to full data center takeovers.
Because DRaaS is cloud-based, you won’t need to make a heavy upfront investment in a data center, servers or software licenses to get your own remote backup and DRaaS solution. DRaaS additionally benefits enterprises by replacing huge capital expenditures with more manageable operational expenditures, making DR accessible to and affordable for any size organization.
The Case for DRaaS
The monthly subscription and OPEX business model of DRaaS, coupled with its direct access to proven business processes and expertise, can quickly add up to an economically sound business case for once-skeptical executive management.
From On-Premise to AWS
In this scenario, DRaaS can help deliver seamless on-premise and off-premise interoperability, so that you can quickly adapt when disaster strikes, and maintain continuous business operations. Under this scenario, you mirror your on-premise environment to AWS and continuously manage changes for fast and accurate cloud recovery service in the event of any present or future failure.
Native Amazon Cloud Applications
Native cloud deployment can also benefit from efficient and agile backup and disaster recovery solutions, which target supporting automated and scheduled instance and volume snapshots. This allows native cloud users to benefit with one click to restore or even take advantage of seamless failover across public cloud provider regions. The Cloud Protection Manager (CPM) solution is a good example. It helps provide comprehensive in-cloud backup and DR. And today it protects hundreds of Amazon cloud-based applications, helping to streamline backup policy while simultaneously monitoring and validating processes behind the scenes…ultimately allowing you to be confident that your backup processes will work at all times.
Driven by the need to preserve enterprises’ vital digital assets, the global market for DRaaS is projected to reach $6.4 billion by 2020. DRaaS provides a comprehensive solution for enterprises that lack the necessary expertise to provision, configure and test an effective disaster recovery plan. With the cloud as an enabler, DRaaS gives you a way to use SaaS services to incorporate best practices and protect and strengthen your IT infrastructure.
In addition to addressing physical disasters, other issues requiring backup should be addressed as well, including having a sound backup and recovery policy and tool in place, the ability to solve logical failures, having to recover a specific file from a certain point in time, a designated database, and more. Cloud Protection Manager (CPM) can help resolve these challenges. CPM allows users to manage multiple AWS accounts and configure policies and schedules to take automated snapshot backups. It also has a Windows agent to consistently back up Windows applications, and allows you to recover a volume from a snapshot, increase its size and switch it with an existing attached volume in a single step.