Three Quarters of European Businesses Might Not Recover from a Disaster

EMC Corporation in November 2011  announced results of the EMC-sponsored European Disaster Recovery Survey 2011 which found that 74% of European companies are not very confident that they can fully recover systems or data and that more than half of all organisations (54%)  lost data or suffered systems downtime in the last 12 months. These findings highlight that companies need to focus on backup and disaster recovery to ensure continued business operations in the event of a natural disaster or the more routine and common IT failure.

Often organizations  think the major cause of a disaster is a natural one (flooding, fire, earthquake,hurricane, etc). However the survey showed that only in 7 % of disasters striking IT the cause was a natural one. Much more likely causes are human error, software or hardware faults (firmware, power fault etc).

Some of the key findings:

  • 74% of organisations are not very confident that they can fully recover after a disaster, according to a new survey of 1,750 European companies
  • 54% surveyed have lost data and/or suffered systems downtime in the last year
  • 61% report hardware failure as the primary cause of data loss and downtime; natural disasters and employee sabotage being much less likely culprits
  • 43% of organisations cite loss of employee productivity as the single biggest economic impact
  • 28% point to lost revenue as a result of a disaster
  • 40% of organisations still use tape for recovery and 80% of these organisations want to replace tape all together, highlighting the need for next generation backup and recovery

How to protect the infrastructure against disasters:
Protection of an infrastructure is technically not very difficult, especially when using virtual machines. Those can easily be replicated to another offsite location. Either by the storage array or by the host (host based replication).  The testing to verify the replicas/applications can be succesfully started within the Recovery Time Objective and Recovery Point Objective can be fully automated.

VirtualSharp has a great solution called ReliableDR which delivers Disaster Recovery Assurance. Replica’s are fully automated tested on RTO and RPO. Read more on ReliableDR here.
Also VMware has a solution for Disaster Recovery called Site Recovery Manager. The recently released version 5.0 offers both host based replication and storage replication.
Zerto has a great solution called Virtual Replication for host based replication which deliveres near synchronous replication for VMware.

As costs for a in-house/self owned DR site are high, more and more solution providers start to offer Disaster Recovery as a Service services. Instead of investing in a datacenter, hardware etc resources are hired from a service provider.
Read more in my blogposting titled Overview of Business Continuity/Disaster Recovery for virtual infrastructures

Read the full press release of EMC here
Presentation of the survey  here.
Download the ‘European Disaster Recovery Survey 2011: The Full Report’

Article on StorageNewsLetter on the European Disaster Recovery Survey here.

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About Marcel van den Berg
I am a technical consultant with a strong focus on server virtualization, desktop virtualization, cloud computing and business continuity/disaster recovery.

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