For every day the datasphere is growing in value and size, the risks of cyberattacks, natural disasters, or even human errors, are expanding exponentially
The vulnerability to such threats has pushed many businesses and organisations to rethink their strategy to achieve not only data protection, but also ‘data resiliency’. While both help preserve an organisation’s digital assets in the event of a disaster, data protection and data resiliency differ in how they achieve this.
Data resiliency is like having many spare keys for your house. It is the ability of data to ‘spring back’ in situations where it is compromised. For instance, the cloud enables data resiliency because data can be stored in multiple locations that are equal in importance, which makes data easy to retrieve from one location if another location fails. The more keys you have in different spots (outside of the house), the less likely you are to get locked out of your house. Data is considered resilient if the second location enables complete data access, and so on. If you hide a key outside, have a key on your keychain, and give your neighbour a spare key, you will be able to get into your house. In terms of data resiliency, if all locations go down, then the organisation loses access to its data and, at the very least, incurs the expense of downtime while trying to gain access. Clearly, the data is no longer resilient.
Similarly, data protection is about having access to data – but it includes other steps to ensure that the entire data ecosystem is safe for as long as needed. A good data protection strategy will guarantee that the data remains uncorrupted and in compliance with all required applications. This is achieved with the help of different safeguards such as regular backups, as well as data retrieval and replication. Reliable data storage solutions create a secure IT environment where data is safely stored and provides the first line of restoration in case of a disaster or attack. A layered security strategy that protects an organisation’s data with multiple copies, in multiple locations, and on multiple types of media is very effective.
Combining the Strength of Data Protection and Data Resiliency
Global cyberattacks have skyrocketed in recent years, and the threat of temporary and permanent loss of data through malware or ransomware is a greater threat than ever before. The restoration of data with little to no downtime or disruption to users is critical to preserving data and, therefore, establishing business continuity long-term. In the event of an attack, it is imperative that data is resilient, allowing users to continue to access data, perhaps being directed to a secondary location where the same data is available and not compromised. In a truly data resilient process, users never know that a disruption has occurred. Resilient systems also enable organisations to avoid downtime when performing upgrades, data migration and planned maintenance.
In the most impermeable data protection plans, IT professionals leverage several technologies, such as disk, tape and cloud, along with a robust data lifecycle management software, with digital data copies stored in various locations and in various states of accessibility (online, virtual air-gap, remote air-gap, physical air-gap, or fully offline). Good data protection plans also meet compliance requirements and ensure that data is stored on reliable storage platforms according to retention policies.
Fending off threats from all forms of attacks as well as protecting against damage from natural disasters is an ongoing job for orgnaizations. Having to keep up with the latest cyberattack or malware method can be made easier by ensuring that a stable, regularly tested and adjustable data protection plan is in place for mission-critical workflows. It is essential that organisations take steps to ensure that data is always available and is never permanently lost. In case of equipment failures, power outages, cyberattacks, operator mistakes, or other compromises, organisations that have done the hard work upfront of making sure their data is both resilient and protected, will see their organizational operations continue uninterrupted.
About the Author
Eric Polet is Product Marketing Manager at Spectra Logic. As Spectra’s Product Marketing Manager, Eric is responsible for helping to define product and feature requirements, position products, develop content and competitive material, support the sales team, and liaise with the product and solutions teams to outline key issues and trends in the customer base. With Spectra Logic for almost 10 years, Eric brings a deep, technical knowledge of enterprise storage environments to his role. Eric earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting with a minor in computer science from Fort Lewis College.
Featured image: ©Issaronow