Harvey. Irma. Jose. Maria. In 2017, those catastrophic hurricanes wreaked havoc across the United States, Puerto Rico and surrounding islands. According to National Geographic, it was the most expensive hurricane season in U.S. history, costing roughly $200 billion. While experts don’t expect the same number of damaging storms in 2018, the amount of named storms and hurricanes will still be above historical averages. Forecasters are predicting there will be 14 named storms this hurricane season; seven are expected to become hurricanes, three of which are likely to be major hurricanes.
Hurricane Season Begins June 1st
While the United States had coasted on a string of good luck following the 2005 devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina, 2017 brought us back to reality—and made organizations everywhere realize how important it is to have a disaster recovery plan. The official hurricane season runs from June to November, with an occasional storm making an early appearance, as we saw with Tropical Storm Arlene last April. Barring another storm reaching our shores before June, organizations looking to secure their critical data have just under two months to do so.
Hope for the Best, Prepare for the Worst
You may be thinking, with only 2 months to go before the season officially arrives, isn’t it too late to create a data protection plan? Not at all! With Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS), businesses, healthcare organizations, and government agencies can quickly and easily ramp up, securing their data with a cloud provider that offers this service. DRaaS secures your data within your cloud provider's infrastructure, granting you immediate access to critical data should a disaster strike. So, even if your facility doesn’t weather the storm, your data will. It remains secure with your provider until you need it so that your business doesn’t miss a beat.
Finding a Reputable DRaaS Provider
When looking for a DRaaS provider, you want to find one that is housed in a hurricane-rated structure, free from flood zones. Along with a secure facility, you want to be sure the provider you choose has quick recovery speeds. This is determined by looking at their Recovery Time Objective (RTO) and their Recovery Point Objective (RPO):
- RTO: how much time can pass during a disaster before it affects your Businesses Continuity Plan (if you don’t have one, the right provider will help you put one in place).
- RPO: the amount of time in which a business function must be restored to avoid negative consequences, or business continuity breaks.
You will want to get as close to a zero RTO and RPO as possible to not disrupt your business needs. So, you should seek out a DRaaS provider that has aggressive recovery speeds and follows a Continuous Data Protection model vs periodic backups.
Also, you’ll want to speak to your DRaaS provider about support. Some providers only offer limited support and may not be available to help after a disaster. To ensure that your provider will be there for you when you need it most, make sure they have live, U.S.-based support available to you 24/7/365.
Hurricane Preparation is Imperative
According to FEMA, on average, 50 percent of small businesses never reopen following a disaster. However, had they been equipped with a disaster recovery plan, it’s likely that number would be significantly less. Ensure your organization doesn’t become part of this disheartening statistic by securing your data with DRaaS—before it’s too late.