Longer outages may require reworking disaster recovery plans

As if having a solid disaster recovery (DR) plan wasn’t hard enough, a new study shows that severe weather is likely to make power outages last even longer. 

Analyzing data from the last 13 years, The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Stanford University found an increase in average interruptions to power. This despite little change in the average frequency of power interruptions.

Even without an increase in severe weather events, the trend is toward longer outages.

So while you may not be more likely to suffer a power outage, those that do suffer an outage are likely looking at a longer recovery time before business is back up and running.

Not a location-based problem

Time was, the only thing you had to worry about was power going out at your office. But the cloud has changed that.

Now power outages not only affect your office location but also the locations where your data is stored. Generally, cloud providers have multiple layers of backups intended to guarantee uptime. But downtime can happen (as Google learned from a recent thunderstorm-sparked outage).

As your organization is likely moving more toward the cloud, it’s important to keep these uptime goals and challenges in mind as part of your disaster recovery program.

Check with providers on:

  • where data centers are located
  • what the primary power source for these data centers is and what redundancies they have in place, and
  • the average downtime for weather-related emergencies.

In many cases, the providers will be quite good at handling these issues. But it never hurts to ask for evidence.

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