Businesses have learned many key lessons during the COVID-19 pandemic, including following:
- The need to be able to deploy a mobile workforce in the time of crisis, whether it is a Cyberattack or a natural disaster.
- The ability to quickly deploy virtual communication mechanisms so that your workforce can resume productivity in a very brief period of time following such a crisis.
Many businesses are also starting to understand the importance of having both a Business Continuity Plan and a Disaster Recover Plan in place. These two types of plans will be the focus of this article.
The terms Business Continuity Plan and Disaster Recovery Plan are often used synonymously. But the reality is that these two plans are quite different from each other. Each plays a different and distinct role following a security breach. To clear up this confusion, this article will define and describe each type of plan.
The Disaster Recovery (DR) Plan: Once you have contained a threat that has impacted your business, the next step is to resume baseline operations. Most often, this will involve simply implementing those mission critical operations that are deemed absolutely necessary. This is where the DR Plan comes into play. A DR Plan should spell out exactly what you and your company will do, and what processes are deemed to be the most important. The DR plan should be viewed as a short-term plan, lasting for a few days or up to a week.
The Business Continuity (BC) Plan: Once you have established the mission critical operations in your DR Plan, the next step is to figure out how you will bring your business back to where it was before you were hit by the security breach. In other words, how will you resume normal operations? Well, this is where the BC Plan comes into play. It should spell what your plans will be and how you will evolve once again. Unlike the DR Plan, the BC Plan is considered a long-term plan, carried out over a period of months, a year or even longer.
It’s important to note that having a “backup schedule” is different than having Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity plans in place. A backup schedule is carried out on a regular, routine basis, preferably daily. But DR and BC plans are enacted on an as-needed basis, following a security breach. The backups that you routinely create will be part of these plans. A future article will describe in detail the many benefits a Business Continuity plan can provide.
Ravi Das is a Cybersecurity Consultant and Business Development Specialist. He also does Cybersecurity Consulting through his private practice, RaviDas Tech, Inc. He also possesses the Certified in Cybersecurity (CC) cert from the ISC2.