How Does Data Recovery Typically Operate with a Cloud Model?
In the past, data recovery has relied on tapes to backup and protect a company’s vital data. Let’s recap some of the major problems with the tape backup: tape backup requires a significant investment of resources such as time, labor, and equipment. Hardware and backup software are expensive, with the cartridges themselves as a continuing cost. Plus, completing daily backups via tape requires immense administrative intervention—that’s time not being spent on revenue generating tasks.
Two key factors in understanding data recovery in any environment are Recovery Time Objectives (RTO) and Recovery Point Objectives (RPO). RTO refers to how quickly your business needs to be able to recover after losing data and can be measured in hours or days. Logic dictates that recovery should be as quick as possible.
RPO refers to how much data your company can afford to lose as measured in hours. So, for example, a Fortune 500 company for some types of data might require an RTO of five hours and an RPO of an hour. The RPO and RTO may vary for different types of data. This is true for most if not all businesses, regardless of size.
Every business needs to determine an RTO and RPO based on their own calculations of risk tolerance and business continuity requirements. As part of this process, it’s important to take a hard look at the type of data your company collects and uses on an hourly, daily or weekly basis. Again, many companies may not fully realize how important a fast recovery is to achieving their business objectives — until they experience a serious data loss.
The impact of a data loss event can be significant with far-reaching consequences. A retail operation, for example, is constantly collecting data (credit card numbers are one such example) in order to perform such tasks as order fulfillment, as well as analytics related to pricing strategies, inventory supply and peak periods of demand. This real-time data is essential to remaining competitive in an ever-changing business environment.
Put simply, many companies can no longer afford to rely on a truck arriving each day to take backup tapes offsite as this would potentially put at risk a full day’s worth of valuable competitive business data. With a cloud, they don’t have to.