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Disaster Recovery (DR) has been a hot topic in many different verticals for a long time. Progress Software deals with all of these verticals. Loss means destruction of data as well as theft. In a recent survey 75% of respondents have experienced a hardware or software outage within the last year (Symantec DR FIndings 2008). We can categorize companies by their vertical market and by their size. I will focus first on the business vertical aspect.
Every vertical that you can imagine needs Disaster Recovery. I will use some verticals as examples of ends of the Disaster Recovery maturity spectrum. Some institutions within these verticals are farther along than others. Unfortunately I am forced to use these generalities to be able to discuss different concepts.
Financial verticals (stock markets, mortgage companies, banks, insurance companies, etc) place a very high value on their data. This vertical has a head start over most other verticals due to the nature of the business and more regulation and requirements around loss of data. For this reason, they have developed much more strict standards and requirements, both voluntary as well as regulatory, that help them build and maintain their Disaster Recovery plan.
Other verticals tend to be a bit more relaxed when it comes to Disaster Recovery planning. Manufacturing has lagged behind due to the nature of the business and more stress being placed on production of goods versus loss of data (and dollars).
Retail falls between these other two vertical markets. Plans are a bit more formal, but are not as stringent as the financial vertical market. Credit card information theft has brought this to the forefront and requirements such as PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards) have forced the retail sector to deal with Disaster Recovery, security, and keeping data safe.
No matter what your vertical, if your company expects to stay in business after a disaster then you must have some type of a plan. The plan must include the complete application recovery environment. Just recovering the database is less than useless unless you have the application to support it.
What is your experience in your vertical? Do you see your industry moving towards Disaster Recovery planning being critical to the business? I’ve love to hear what you see in your business.
In my next entry I will talk about Disaster Recovery based on your company size.
Until then, if you can’t recover then don’t let it fail.
Brian Bowman is a Product Manager in the OpenEdge business Unit at Progress, responsible for all facets of Product Deployment and Operations. This includes database, Installation, Platforms and monitoring and management tools.
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