The London Air Traffic Control System Outage Took Engineers By Surprise, Is Your Disaster Recovery Strategy Actionable?

London Air Traffic Control

This past Friday served as a reminder that even the most complex and closely monitored computer systems can experience outages. The London air traffic control system went down on December 12th due to a previously unseen software glitch in a critical outsourced system. The engineers had not planned for the problem, which remains largely undefined for public consumption, but the fact is that it happened and those responsible for the availability of the system can’t deny the failure (regardless of the cause). In all likelihood, high volume may have put undue stress on the system causing it to fail resulting in chaos that essentially brought air travel in and out of London to a complete s … Read more

Business Continuity And Disaster Recovery Best Practices From The Availability Front Lines

disaster recovery

As a Marine I learned the hard way how difficult it is to think straight under pressure. Now I find myself after two decades in the trenches of business continuity and disaster recovery (BC/DR) realizing some of the same lessons-learned apply to Information Technology! Since becoming a business technologist in the mid-1990′s, I’ve been ambushed by unexpected problems, had to “march” at double-time to meet our business objectives, and sweat it out waiting to see if a plan-of-attack was going to work like our marching orders said it would! So, I’d like to save you some of the blood, sweat, and tears I’ve experienced along the way by sharing with you these six valuable lessons-learned from the … Read more

Keeping An Eye On Ebola: 6 Steps To Avoid Pandemic And Panic At Your Company While Maintaining Business Continuity

ebola

“Pandemic” and “panic” sound a lot alike. Certainly, the first can trigger the second in next to no time, as the recent outbreak of Ebola has demonstrated. But as a business continuity planning (BCP) professional, you can take healthy steps to avoid both 1. Keep your ear to the ground … and your eye on the Internet Usually, crisis management plans get “triggered” by an event, such as a natural disaster or an outage. But in the case of a pandemic such as Ebola, you might want to pull the starting gun on your plan before anybody so much as coughs or sneezes. To be specific, you should muster your crisis management team and have them start monitoring the websites of the World Health Organiza … Read more

The Best IT Blogs Of The Week: 11-26-14

IT blogs

Ah, Thanksgiving. A time for turkey and gravy, some long-overdue rest, and a time to celebrate all that you’re thankful for. As for most of us, I’m incredibly thankful for my friends and family, but I’m also thankful to attend my university (and for the break from my studies)! What are you thankful for? In this day of economic uncertainty, most people would say that they’re very thankful for their jobs. And for all you hard workers in IT, the last thing you want is to be dismissed from your company. For this reason, be sure to read Roger Grimes’s piece on the ten security mistakes that WILL get you fired. He covers some critical errors you’ll want to avoid, like cutting off the CEO’s access t … Read more

How To Select The Right Location For Your Disaster Recovery Data Center

data center

Remember the business aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy? In each case, companies far and wide scrambled to put business continuity/disaster recovery (BC/DR) plans in place if they didn’t already have them – whether or not they had felt so much as a raindrop from the super-storms. But human memory is short-lived. As incredible as it may seem, some people have already forgotten the devastation and destruction caused by disasters such as Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina. The problem, of course, is that the risk of disasters hasn’t gone down, even if our alertness to them has. All you need to do is take a look at data such as Sperling’s natural disaster map to see that the next disaster cou … Read more

The Simple Way To Explain Business Continuity And Disaster Recovery To A 7-Year-Old

disaster recovery

I was chatting with my boss the other day, and he said, “My daughter asked me last night, ‘What do you do, Daddy?’ You know, it stumped me for a minute. After all, if you’re an architect or a librarian or a teacher or a writer, it’s easy to explain it to a kid. But how do you explain that you work for a BC/DR firm specializing in organizational resiliency? Children don’t know what business continuity or disaster recovery are, or why a company would need either one.” Having a few peers and relatives who do not understand what BC/DR is, I was curious. “What did you tell her?” I asked. “I gave her a very simple analogy,” he replied. “I told her I’m like a doctor. But instead of treating pe … Read more

The Best IT Blogs Of The Week: 11-19-14

IT blogs

How do you feel about privacy? It’s a simple question, but tough to answer in this day and age where the digital world has complicated how our information is used and shared. The Pew Research Center has found that Americans distrust just about any and every communications channel with sharing their information, from email to landlines. “Yet Americans for now seem to grudgingly accept that these are the trade-offs of living in the digital age — or else they fear that it is too late to do anything about it,” writes Claire Cain Miller from the New York Times. Check out the article detailing more on the privacy paradox titled “Americans Say They Want Privacy, but Act as if They Don’t.” Are you on … Read more

The Best IT Blogs Of The Week: 11-12-14

IT blogs

When it comes to college, there’s a lot of uncertainty. “Will my child make friends? Will they like their school and their studies?” These are some of the questions we ask ourselves. But one we don’t often think about is this: “Will someone steal my son or daughter’s information?” It’s more common than you think. Don’t let a breach on college campuses take advantage of your child’s information – make sure you and your child are aware of the issues at hand. For that reason, Sue Poremba is detailing five cyber threats that YOU should know before your child goes off to college. These include awareness of malware, password problems, and BYOD, among others. And while we’re on the topic of warni … Read more