Business continuity is all about having a complete plan to deal with a problematic situation, which would help your organization continue to function with little or no disruption. Disruptions can occur at any point and sometimes can be completely unexpected; a flood, a cyber-attack, or even system failure can cause significant disruption.
What Does Cloud Business Continuity Mean?
Thinking about a business without technology can be next to impossible, but with major dependencies on technology, it increases the chances of disruption in business continuity. Ideally, business continuity cloud is a process that helps in the development of resilience rather than solving immediate issues.
Moving to the cloud
helps organizations solve this issue with ease and can also aid in making your organization more efficient, more adaptive, and eventually more profitable. To do this, it is essential that you do careful planning, especially when it’s about building business continuity on the cloud.
Primary Considerations for Maintaining Business Continuity
Traditionally, business continuity planning was meant to focus on planning for failover and high availability of critical business systems. However, organizations should take a more comprehensive approach that encompasses both organizational measures and technologies to reduce disruption, maintain security,
and support uninterrupted productivity to keep a business running. An ideal business continuity strategy should address team structure, a formal plan, crisis communication, and awareness programs.
Key considerations are
• Ensure that your cloud service provider offers the level of access that your business
• Make sure you have a clear understanding of how to get your data when there is a break in the flow of information.
• Have a well-thought-through plan of what to do if the cloud provider experiences a disaster.
The Key Challenges with Business Continuity on Cloud
Even cloud business continuity providers also face similar issues when the conversation is about business continuity. Some of the cloud-specific problems are:
• Integrating onto a cloud platform
brings significant dependency due to all the communication that takes place.
• It is vital to understand the critical functions that are involved.
• Organizations must undertake due diligence to understand how cloud service providers (AWS, Azure Google Cloud etc.,) operate and cover disruption.
• Shadow IT is a primary concern. Some freeware platforms also own your data and don’t delete it even when the account is closed.
• Cloud misconfiguration is another major concern. Around 68% of organizations stated that cloud misconfiguration is their top concern.
“In my role, I was constantly thinking about the continuity of operations, so I spent a lot of time developing options a, b, c, etc., for response to different scenarios. This approach has helped me a lot in my planning for business impact, business continuity, disaster recovery, and incident response. Another area was controlling access. This aspect helps when addressing access control and least privilege access,”
Brad Fugitt, Chief Information Security Officer at Pax8
Perks of Cloud Business Continuity
The cloud is the best option that offers timely and error-free data recovery, which aids business continuity. In addition, the cloud is the best alternative when you cannot physically access your main offices. Having an on-premise model
could bring the functioning of a business to a complete standstill.
The benefits of a business continuity plan on the cloud are:
• Ensures regular backups and easy failover
• Reduces downtime drastically
• Offers better network and information security management
• Efficiently scales to suit your business requirements
• Minimizes the impact of denial of service (DoS) attacks
• It completely eliminates the need to sync software on two sites
• Drastically reduces the recovery time – to only a few minutes
Cloud gives organizations the option to become responsive and resilient to business continuity. With the pandemic being a huge disruption, organizations without a cloud option would have struggled to keep up. Keeping in mind the highly dynamic environment we’re in, cloud-based business is the way forward.
The Atlanta ransomware attack is an important lesson in inadequate business continuity planning. The event revealed that the city’s IT was woefully unprepared for the attack. Just two months’ prior, an audit found 1,500 to 2,000 vulnerabilities in the city’s IT systems, which were compounded by “obsolete software and an IT culture driven by ‘ad hoc or undocumented’ processes,” according to StateScoop.
How Do Cloud-based Systems Aid in Business Continuity?
Cloud-based business continuity eliminates all the expenses that are tied to on-premise solutions. This means you’d not need to worry about on-site hardware and building costs, physical security, and other similar costs.
How Are Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Different?
Business continuity emphasizes keeping your business operations during a disaster, while disaster recovery focuses on restoring data access and IT infrastructure after a disaster. Functioning as a cloud-based business helps ensure optimum business continuity.
What Are the Three Critical Components of a Business Continuity Plan?
An effective business continuity plan would have three major components. These three fundamental elements are resilience, recovery, and contingency.