Be Prepared for Disaster

We often see incredible disaster scenes from Hollywood Movies repeated in real life. Hollywood produced a movie called “The China Syndrome” and soon after the movie was released, we were all amazed to see the similarities between that movie and what happened at Three Mile Island.

tsunami photo

Recently Hollywood produced a movie called “Perfect Storm” that showed a huge wave that was unbelievably tall. Most of the viewers dismissed it by saying that could only happen in the movies.

But, after the earthquake in Japan, some parts of Japan were hit with tsunamis that were nearly 130 feet high resulting in the evacuation of a large number of people to various parts of Japan. Japan also suffered a nuclear accident that released radiation and necessitated the evacuation of people and businesses around the power plant. Business owners left everything behind with no access to their critical data such as their customers and financial information. The large Japanese companies that had their local offices in the area were not affected because they had good offsite data backup and business disaster recovery plans. But it was devastating to those small businesses that did not have a good offsite backup or business disaster recovery plans.

While we are not likely to be affected by aliens and monsters, other disasters do occur in real life and we need to recognize that these natural and man-made disasters do occur from time to time.

For business owners, to increase the chance of continuing their business, the following are some of the important things related to IT that business owners need to think about before disaster strikes:

  1. Do you have local and offsite data backups?
  2. Have you tested to see if the backup is working?
  3. Do you have a business continuity plan?
  4. If the server fails, can you resume your business quickly?
  5. Do you have a plan if your primary internet service is disrupted?
  6. Do you have a contractual relationship with a reliable IT service company?
  7. Do you have a plan if your main power supply is disrupted?

If you can answer “yes” to all of these questions, you’re ready for a disaster.  But the truth is that most small businesses aren’t ready.  When disaster strikes, it’s the small business owner that pays with his livelihood.

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