When a natural disaster strikes, you can say goodbye to your ‘normal world’ in an instant! Everything is turned upside-down and as spectators we can relate to the turmoil via news and media coverage.

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When a natural disaster strikes

When a natural disaster strikes you can say goodbye to your ‘normal world’ in an instant! Everything is turned upside-down and as spectators we can relate to the turmoil via news and media coverage. What is generally unknown to those who have not experienced a natural disaster personally, is that communication methods taken for granted in everyday life can become inaccessible.

The Japan earthquake of 2011

Following the Japan earthquakes of 2011 and most natural disasters, social networks such as Facebook and Twitter become crucial communication tools when cell phone networks jam due to overloading. In Japan, people flocked to an Apple store with free Wi-Fi in order to contact their loved ones. This provided a valuable lesson regarding the risk of relying upon traditional telecommunications to execute disaster recovery plans. The benefit of internet-reliant communications is that unlike cell phone networks, the internet is accessible via a number of providers.

natural disaster

The Christchurch earthquake of 2011

In the Christchurch, New Zealand earthquake of 2011, the national military was called to restore order and establish a perimeter around the badly damaged CBD (Central Business District). There was a ban on unauthorized access for 6 months! Unfortunately, this led to many companies being unable to access their computer systems either due to the physical cordon or because their staff were unavailable. This threatened the long-term survivability of businesses which operated at a national level without a remote back-up system because they risked shutdown as their company was starved of data and IT infrastructure.

Organizations who utilized a traditional tape-based disaster recovery strategy needed to retrieve their magnetic media from buildings that had been ‘red stickered’ in order to recover their servers. When a building was ‘red stickered,’ it meant you could not access the building easily or without an official escort. In the initial weeks after the earthquake, over two-thirds of all the buildings in the CBD were still red stickered.

In a post-disaster environment

In a post-disaster environment, businesses that out-performed their competition utilized a high availability solution offering real-time backup with minimal downtime. This means that their data was recoverable up until the moment of disaster. This prevented those companies losing valuable data such as client lists, stock inventory and order details among others.

When considering your DR strategy, Maxava’s high availability / disaster recovery co-location or cloud solutions both offer last transaction recovery points with downtime being typically measured in minutes. The key advantage of Maxava is that our cloud-based disaster recovery solutions can now be initiated remotely from most web-connected devices, including smartphones and tablets. This ensures our customer’s DR strategy can be executed, even if local staff or telecommunication networks are unavailable.

Creating a robust disaster recovery strategy can be complicated however with over 2,000 successful installations, Maxava, the industry leader in IBM i disaster recovery, is here to help. If you want to assess your IT DR strategy, we offer a free Disaster Recovery Strategy Guide or you can contact our experts who will be happy to discuss your HA/DR needs with no obligation.

Hugh's photo

Having joined Maxava in 2015, Hugh has taken on the role of managing marketing activities for the Asia and Pacific region. Holding a Masters Degree in Management, undergraduate qualifications in International Business, Strategy and Marketing and a background in consulting, Hugh brings a fresh perspective to Maxava. He remains passionate about working with customers to help them achieve the best returns from their people and DR systems. For questions about this article, contact Hugh.


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