Disaster recovery specialists Databarracks has revealed that a disturbing number of British firms lack confidence in their disaster recovery capabilities.
The survey results are alarming considering the devastating nature of ransomware attacks these days, some of which have cost companies tens of millions of pounds.
The Databarracks research questioned over 400 IT decision-makers in the UK and it revealed that just a third of UK organisations (35 percent) are very confident in their current disaster recovery (DR) plans.
The good news however is that over half (53 percent) said they are fairly confident, but 8 percent of British firms have concerns.
And perhaps even worse, less than half (49 percent) have complete confidence in their current backup solution.
“Over the last year, we haven’t seen a huge amount of progress in DR and backup confidence,” said Peter Groucutt, MD at Databarracks. “At the same time, the number of cyber threats has continued to grow as a cause of both data loss and downtime – the Norsk Hydro ransomware incident is a leading example.
“Organisations are lacking something in terms of disaster recovery strategy, and the policies, procedures and technology needed to execute this strategy,” said Groucutt. “It’s hard to function confidently as a business if you’re unsure of how well you’d cope if disaster struck – whether that’s cyber-related or something else like a power outage.”
Databarracks said that part of the problem – and also a clue to the solution – lies in the current approaches companies are taking: almost a quarter (23 percent) of respondents do not have offsite backups.
Another 13 percent of organisations never test backups and 42 percent have not tested DR processes in the last 12 months.
“Frequent testing and having offsite copies of data should be crucial pillars of any DR and Business Continuity strategy,” said Groucutt. “This doesn’t need to be expensive or difficult – it’s simply a case of taking the right steps to improve resilience.”
He advises firms to find ways to make testing part of their day-to-day operations.
“If there is a public transport strike, test your remote working practices,” he said. “Whenever you need to make updates to IT systems, test backups. Exercise these processes on a consistent basis, and staff and the business will always be ready to act when an incident does strike.”
Cyber attacks such as ransomware have costing the global economy lots of money, with some noteworthy attacks against US cities of late.
A ransomware attack recently crippled the IT systems of a Florida city called Lake City that has a population of over 12,000 people. They opted to pay the hackers $500,000 (£394,000) to restore their systems.
That decision to pay the hackers comes after the council of another city in Florida (Riviera Beach City) voted unanimously to pay hackers $600,000 who took over their computer systems via a ransomware attack four weeks ago.
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