Colocation and Disaster Recovery

Hopefully most businesses and/or website owners will never need it, but “disaster recovery plans” are something you need to create and update on a regular basis. While millions of dollars are lost each year thanks to critical business data being lost in a myriad of ways, many of these losses are actually preventable—but you need to take the preventable steps first. According to the InformationAge digital media outlet, 80 percent of businesses that are victims of “major data loss” close their doors within a year and a half. One IT manager, Darren Kirby, is trying to warn businesses about disaster recovery mistakes, encouraging everyone to make it part of their business model.

In many cases, having a disaster recovery system is an investment, albeit a critical one. Like many preventative care best practice (such as getting that annual physical from your doctor), unfortunately many people do not realize how badly they need it until it is too late. A “disaster” is not necessarily what you imagine, like hurricanes and floods (although it certainly can be). A disaster can also be extensive server downtime, which ultimately can bring a business to its knees. Such a disaster mars reputations and destroys stakeholder relationships.

Not in the Budget?

Kirby says that a lot of startups, small- and mid-sized businesses simply assume they cannot afford high quality data protection, server recovery or “the best” colocation service provider in their area. However, “Can I afford it?” should not be the first question according to Kirby, because there are a myriad of pricing plans out there. Even some of the biggest enterprises and corporations are skimping on disaster recovery because they do not have auto backups or the ability to save data in real time.

The biggest cause of data loss is software problems and human error—not natural disasters, hackers, break-ins and the like. That being said, preventative measures need to be complemented with efforts to minimize the impact (not just avoid it all together, because that is not possible). One of the best ways to do this is with employee education. Workers cannot avoid such mistakes if they are not aware of the problems and consequences. Another great approach is using remote servers, whether dedicated or shared, in order to encrypt data and back it up in real time. This is where colocation service providers come in, and it is the best way to achieve restoration if there is a disaster or mistake.

Nobody’s “Home” Anymore

There was a time when major companies preferred in-house server rooms and management, but those days have come to an end—at least for savvy enterprises. Today, there is a move towards cloud-based storage systems along with colocation service providers for server storage and management, because it is the best approach for disaster recovery. With cloud-based storage systems, the virtual approach means no risk of environmental factors, and it is also a very affordable solution with no data limit storage.

However, businesses that need a dedicated server still need a place to safely put this costly hardware. Keeping it on-site doesn’t make sense unless you’ve build an in-house data center that rivals Fort Knox. Very few enterprises need or want that kind of responsibility. Colocation service providers offer “rack space rental” in highly secure data centers where you can buy your own server, then delegate professionals to store it and manage it. This means less work, time and money for you and your business—but it doesn’t come without risks.

A great colocation provider will offer a data center that is highly clean and secure. It should be nearly impenetrable and safeguard against environmental threats like natural disasters. Carefully selecting a local Utah colocation provider will take a little leg work, such as talking with representatives and checking out reviews, but it is worth it. This is one of the best means of establishing a disaster recovery plan. What happens if your in-house server is stolen, ill-maintained or is a victim during a freak tornado incident? This is one of the costliest pieces of hardware out there, with some servers valued at around $200,000. It deserves protection and disaster recovery plans—which is exactly what a great colocation provider offers.