Not all VPS hosting solutions are created equal. Some companies talk a big game to lure in trusting clients, but what happens when times get tough? Will your provider be available to assist you when the worst possible scenario happens? Let’s take a look at how a good VPS hosting company will handle the two dirtiest words in data: disaster recovery.
Why Does Disaster Recovery Matter?
In the modern age, every company deals in data. Over the last several years, data breaches have become growing problems for organizations big and small. According to Digital Guardian, data breaches cost American companies an estimated $8.19 million in 2018 alone. How you (and your host) manage data security is more important than ever. Failing to have a disaster recovery plan that works well and fast will cost you time, money, and potential clients.
Disaster Recovery Step #1: Where Data Is Kept Matters
While VPS usage is a two-way street, your company and your host have to work together towards data security. Consider where physical data is kept. If actively used data is kept on your premises, where are the backups kept? Best practices would suggest that at least two copies be held–physical and digital–but never in the same place. Before exploring a new VPS hosting agreement, determine your data storage needs with those who understand the subtleties of data hygiene. Consult members of your IT, leadership, and operations teams to ensure everyone can agree to data standards before disaster recovery is required. Once you know what you need, get your potential hosts involved.
Disaster Recovery Step #2: Developing an Ongoing Backup Process
Once you understand the importance of maintaining security, it’s important to develop a regular schedule for file backups. One of the good things about having a VPS hosting plan is that data is often regularly saved. This allows all company members to work on the same network concurrently and from anywhere! The problem with so much concurrent work: a lot of copies in a lot of places. By scheduling a regular backup of files, old copies of files can be removed and replaced with the most current versions. Many experts will recommend that backups happen on a weekly basis but it all depends on what your company does with data and how much data you have. Consider the kinds of data and the amount that need to be backed up. More data or more sensitive data will require more time and space for backups.
Disaster Recovery Step #3: Test Your Solution Often
Just because your team has landed on a VPS provider and a plan doesn’t mean it’s perfect. Systems get overloaded. Servers crash. Data can be lost. You can’t avoid the needs for serious disaster recovery. Consider running regular stress tests and simulations to detect possible weaknesses in your network and your host’s network. Many companies will establish a test environment while developing new processes and systems to locate bugs and possible weaknesses. Determine what works and what needs work before it’s too late. Consider involving your VPS host in the testing process. After all, they’re your partners in securing your data
Disaster Recovery Step #4: Get Your Disaster Recovery Plan in Writing
Once you’ve determined which VPS partner to go into business with, it’s important to have all terms and conditions in writing from the get-go. There’s no bigger headache than trying to figure out who is doing what in the midst of a data disaster. Key team members should partner with legal teams to draft clear terms that can be agreed upon between your organization and the host company. These are often referred to as Service Level Agreements or SLAs.
In SLAs, action plans for each part of the disaster recovery plan are spelled out for all involved. This allows the company or the host to undertake necessary processes to mitigate and address data breaches. Additionally, it will allow both parties to work together to prevent future issues. A service level agreement is legally binding and holds everyone responsible for their roles in data security and remediation.
Disaster Recovery Step #5: Review Your Disaster Recovery Plan Annually (or More Often)
While everything we’ve discussed today makes for a solid recovery plan, plans must adapt and change. They will change as your business changes in size, in direction, or in data needs. In many SLAs, clients will have the option to make adjustments to terms and services. Be mindful of the terms used in the SLA your organization signs–it might result in change fees, penalties, or other negative impacts for changes that occur outside of designated terms.
Similarly, you are a client of your VPS host. You reserve the right to sing their praises and air your grievances accordingly. A lot of hosting companies will bend over backwards to get your team to sign on the dotted line, but what happens after the ink has dried?
Disaster Recovery Step #6: Build and Rebuild Your Incident Response Team
As your company’s data needs change, consider drafting an incident response team to handle all the steps listed here. This team will be involved in the overall development, monitoring, and improvement of disaster recovery strategies as time goes on. The more time involved, the more costly the problem becomes. According to Comparitech, “An hour of downtime can cost $8000 for a small company, $74,000 for a medium company, and $700,000 for a large enterprise.” An entire day could cost a large company $42 million dollars!
Solar VPS: Building Custom VPS Solutions Since 2005
Now that you’ve seen the six most important steps to finding the right VPS host, look no further. The skilled team at Solar VPS has been building customized virtual private server plans for fifteen years. Our experts understand what it takes to maximize security while reducing the need for disaster recovery. Whether you’re using iOS, Linux, Windows, or a mixture of all three, we can find the perfect networking program for your organization. We’ll be there to support you no matter when–24/7/365. When you think about safety and security for your VPS, think Solar VPS.
Contact us today!