Whatever exciting product or service your business offers, chances are that you rely on IT to some extent and with the increasing threat of cyber attacks (phishing, business compromise scams, malware) it has never been more important to protect your business. That is where disaster recovery planning comes in.

A recent study by Barclays found that 48% of small businesses in the UK were targeted in the last 12 months by cyber criminals. If your business is attacked, it can mean loss of service, data or funds.

So how can you keep your business safe?

Firstly, a comprehensive review of your cyber security is crucial. Assess what data you keep, how it is collected and where it is stored. Are your current safeguards sufficient? Firewalls and internet gateways can limit external unauthorized access, but you also need anti-virus software automatically updated, strong password protection and regular monitoring.

There are other physical risks to your business, of course, such as extreme weather, fire or flooding, that could necessitate falling back on Disaster Recovery. However, losing data or falling victim to various cyber fraud schemes would arguably be more disastrous in the long run for most businesses.

“Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.” (Alexander Graham Bell)

If you do not already have a Disaster Recovery Plan (DRP), Business Garage would strongly advise that you create one, with policies and procedures to support you, get your business back on track and mitigate losses as much as possible.

To draft a DRP, you need to:

  • Consider your IT systems, security and the risks
  • Think about how you will answer customer queries
  • Nominate staff who will manage the crisis
  • Identify suppliers who can support you and alternative premises if needed
  • Test the plan
  • Consider whether should training be given to staff

A cloud-based IT solution enables your workers to access your system remotely, so they can work at home or in a different venue. With Office 365, for example, information is constantly stored to the cloud and the software is regularly updated so security can be higher than older, networked server systems. It is also worth an offsite back-up just in case.

Business Garage can help you

Business Garage has years of professional expertise advising and supporting businesses with their operations and policies.

We also have a meeting room that can accommodate up to 12 people and has WiFi, aircon and parking at our Milton Park office, should you need a space where your staff can get on with work and restore business operations.

We can also answer incoming calls for you while you get back on your feet!

Finally, it is worth noting that as with any policy, you should review the DRP regularly and keep it up to date. Hopefully you will never need it but as they say, better safe than sorry…

Resources:

https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisations/documents/1575/it_security_practical_guide.pdf

https://www.krollontrack.co.uk/blog/top-tips/writing-a-disaster-recovery-plan-for-your-small-business-free-template/

http://smallbusiness.co.uk/disaster-recovery-plans-and-small-businesses-2495771/