Don’t Abdicate Your Disaster Recovery Just because your Employees are Doing It

In today’s world of cloud and BYOD (bring your own device) computing, disaster recovery sometimes almost seems to be organising itself. Employees can copy all sorts of data to mobile phones, tablets and personal web storage, including customer lists, proposal templates, financial spread-sheets and more. It would take at least a double disaster – for instance, both your company IT systems collapsing and their device falling into the swimming pool – for them to be no longer able to work. Does that mean that like this your tech-savvy workers can save you the effort of organising disaster recovery for your company?

As you’ve already guessed, the answer is no. For one thing, you may not want such data redundancy to exist. Notwithstanding potential synchronisation problems and working on out of date data, sensitive information shouldn’t just be “out there” within reach of the first hacker to come across it. It’s that two-faced cloud problem again: on the one hand, cloud is great because it opens up so many opportunities; on the other hand, unjustified assumptions or attitudes that tempt you to abdicate on issues like disaster recovery can make it a veritable IT health risk.

Back to basics: the right disaster recovery planning and policies still need to be thought out, defined and applied. Cloud computing and mobile devices can still be a part of that, and for that matter a useful and cost-effective part. However the idea that these two tools are sufficient by themselves as an enterprise DR solution is unrealistic. Your DR planning has to take into account all the relevant eventualities; as just one example, having to change your point of access to your data after denial of access to office premises and any personal computing device that happens to be left in them.