Does Your Data Recovery Plan Account for Natural Disasters?

Larry Xu

Companies in this day and age must have data recovery plans. The reason for this is obvious: It is to ensure business continuity after a catastrophic event that would damage or even destroy the companies’ valuable and even critical data. However, “According to a survey of 1,600 data center managers and directors by Symantec, 32% describe their current disaster recovery plan as "average" and more than a third (36 %) of those who have a plan deem it "inadequate." In fact, only 11 % identified their plan as "excellent."”- Jack Cullen/ Business Finance, October 3, 2011. The survey result here shows an unnerving reality that the majority of companies did not have solid data disaster recovery plans that would withstand the strike of natural disasters. Does your data recovery plan account for natural disasters?

Disasters, such as earthquakes, tornados, hurricanes, heavy floods, terrorist attacks, internet outage, human errors, etc. are all unpredictable. A disaster is unpredictable and random in nature. It is unconceivable for anybody to constantly prepare for these disastrous events. Yet, it is also critically important for companies to come up with data recovery plans that not only increase the awareness of these events, but more importantly boost preparedness in case the catastrophic events do occur.

There are many factors to consider when a company tries to establish a data recovery plan. And undoubtedly the plans can differ significantly by different companies. To limit the scope of discussion, this white paper only lists the following major considerations:

  • Conduct a data assessment.
  • Select a physical data back-up facility or in cloud.
  • Define the acceptable recovery time.


A data recovery plan is a integral part of total data strategy and should cover many instances of accidental data loss: hardware failure, system crashes, network breakdowns, and human errors. But the most severe and catastrophic damage to an enterprise data are natural disasters and terrorist attacks. The unpredictable and calamitous nature of these events requires companies to institute data recovery plans that will heighten the preparedness for these events so that companies can preserve the past and continue for the future.