business is great

Disaster Recovery Is My Business… And Business Is Good

business is greatI recently blogged about the messed-up state of disaster recovery/business continuity — a.k.a. DR/BC — as the amount of data to be stored snowballs. Internet-generated broadband traffic will increase approximately 50% year over year on fixed networks, and 100% on mobile networks, while cloud-based network traffic will grow 600% by 2016.

Backups are exceeding backup windows, and the costs of downtime and data loss are getting downright scary, i.e. 94% of companies suffering from a catastrophic data loss do not survive. A disruption at one of its network service providers halted trading of over-the-counter stocks for 3-1/2 hours in the US in November. The value of trades was about $1 billion, compared with $227 billion for stocks listed on the NYSE or NASDAQ.

At the end of August NASDAQ was shut down for over three hours because of a technology malfunction. Squirrels have been found guilty of two other disruptions, a 40-minute shutdown in 1994 that was triggered when a squirrel chewed through a power line, and in 1987 another squirrel was to blame for an outage that lasted 82 minutes.

In the world of high-frequency trading — the use of technological tools and computer algorithms to trade securities on a rapid basis — a 5 millisecond (thousandth of a second) delay in transmitting an automatic trade can cost a broker 1% of its flow, which could be worth $4 million in revenues per millisecond. That’s just latency; what does a 3-hour-plus outage cost?

Of course, when there is a problem, there is also an opportunity. New reports show that spending on DR/BC, especially DR as a service, is skyrocketing.

Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service is expected to grow at a CAGR of 54.64% over the period 2014-2018. The increasing need for flexibility of cloud-based disaster recovery services is one of the key factors contributing to this market growth, along with growing demand for hybrid cloud disaster recovery services from SMEs.

DR/BC is a top technology priority for the next 12 months, according to a recent Forrester survey. More than half — 59% — of North American enterprises, and 78% of European enterprises, rated improving DR/BC a critical or high priority

Historically, data centers have been viewed as service delivery centers in which cost and risk must be balanced, but over the new few years agility will become increasingly important in future, according to Gartner. The research company said there are eight areas to consider when developing a data center strategy that balances cost, risk, and agility, including integrating DR/BC into the core data center strategy. The move away from a “just-in-case” strategy to making BC and DR a part of continuous data operations will reduce cost and potentially improve agility, it said.

The bottom line is that DR/BC is starting to get a lot more attention from CIOs and the C-Suite. The only question is whether or not it is getting enough attention.

Image credit: jm3 on Flickr (flickr) – CC-BY-SA