Virtualization Technology News and Information
Planning For Disaster Recovery in a Connected Device Era
Written by Michael Dilio, Software Defined Storage Product and Solutions Marketing Manager, SUSE 

Between the proliferation of unstructured data and seasonal natural disasters, data storage professionals are prioritizing disaster recovery (DR) more than ever before. However, the concerns don't just stop there: new regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) are creating new compliance challenges. In this era of heightened compliance, having a strong DR plan can help a business avoid both costly fines and data management issues.

Summer months present the perfect time to revamp your DR program. Here are some ideas to consider when you revisit your plan:

Planning for a Compliance Era 

The GDPR officially rolled out earlier this year in an effort to strengthen and unify data protection for EU consumers, while also protecting the exportation of personal data outside of Europe. The regulation brings tougher requirements for organizations that store "personally identifiable data," such as names, photographs and addresses. For storage professionals, this means rethinking the way they are managing this type of data.

To meet the compliance requirements, storage professionals must first understand what personal data exists within their organization. They can start by identifying where the data is created, where it resides and who owns it. In addition, companies should consider participating in a regular data audit to help determine what personal data exists. This way they can review which applications have access to these details and figure out how to make the access process more compliant. Resulting policies can then be put in place to secure the data and ensure compliance with GDPR regulations. As part of your DR plan, it's also crucial to ensure that your system is continuously operational for an extended length of time - otherwise known as high availability (HA).

Preparing for Emerging Technologies  

More enterprises are investing in connected devices, but they aren't prepared for the data management challenges that come with them. These IoT devices can capture detailed information much faster and effectively than traditional IT systems. However, they are also increasing the amount of unstructured data. For example, new aircrafts now contain as many as 10,000 sensors on each wing. That's 20,000 sensors transmitting data from just the wings of the aircraft. The expansion of IoT device data and usage will only continue to grow as other industries continue to see its benefits, which is why storage professionals must prepare for these challenges.

In addition to the storage problems, there are also greater security risks involved with connected devices as many of them (i.e., wearables) were not created with these concerns in mind. It becomes crucial for a connected enterprise to establish a disaster recovery plan that is inclusive of these new vulnerabilities. In this plan, consider if all the data being analyzed from your connected devices needs to be saved. That will help reduce the amount of data and potential security threats.

Uncovering Testing Environment Threats:  

For IT professionals, it is extremely valuable to conduct regular disaster recovery tests. However, the complexities of the testing process and its cost can make it a second-tier priority at times. Rapid data growth only amplifies this issue. According to a survey conducted by Statista, many organizations wishing to deploy a test environment are challenged by the multiple versions of testing environments they have. In addition, 48 percent were unable to manage the needs of test environments, such as network and service virtualization facilities. Without a solid testing environment, it is challenging to create a proper disaster recovery plan.

Disaster recovery is a crucial part of any IT operation. New challenges will arise each year, and IT teams need to be adaptable and ready to address them. Understanding the potential challenges and identifying the people, skills and technology to address them is an important first step.


About the Author

Michael Dilio is product- and solutions-marketing manager at SUSE. He is a senior product-strategy and marketing specialist with a strong expertise in relationship management. He oversees the software-defined storage category, where he leads messaging for a variety of solutions. Before SUSE, he held senior marketing positions at Cisco, NetApp and Lenovo. Mike received his BA in business management from Pace University.

Published Wednesday, November 07, 2018 7:39 AM by David Marshall
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