Disaster Recovery (DR) in 2019 is a challenge all organization must shoulder and give serious attention too as the increase in cyberattacks, sensitive data breaches and system outages have become a common repeating occurrence.

DR role in organizations must be put on par with other critical organizational short- and long-term strategic planning as downtime and permanent data loss could cost more than $40 billion annually. The following are 3 common DR challenges in 2019.

#1. Lack of proper DR plan

Many times, when it comes to DR there is either lack of a comprehensive plan in place or complete nonexistence of it. Most of the time organization might consider a backup plan as DR, the truth if far from it. Organizations must determine what is important to create a disaster recovery plan by obtaining inputs from all relevant organizational stake holders assisting in operational and business continuity needs. DR plan then must represent all functional areas that the Information Technology (IT) department supports prior to, during, and after a disaster. It must also include all applications, networks, server and storage, along with a broad range of “what if” scenarios. In addition, the plan must be kept current. Organization and business priorities often change, and these changes need to be reflected in the plan.

#2. DR personnel lacks knowledge on latest threats.

Cyberattacks especially ransomware has cost quite a considerable threat to organizations in the last couple of years. With the increasing media reports on organization being victim of ransomware attack where perpetrators will ask large amount of money in exchange for data they have encrypted through infecting critical systems with their ransomware, many DR personnel were found lacking an understanding of what’s system has been affected and what needs to be recovered. The same can be said for an attack that involves a cybercriminal moving laterally across organizations network. One of the major disaster recovery challenges today is that DR personnel don’t have a proper incident response plan that identifies what data can potentially be affected, making it necessary to recover to a time before the attack. This recovery strategy most of time would potentially cost massive data lost that could affect the organization operations. The misguided thought of most DR personnel that these attacked might only affect a few systems and minimal amount of their data must be corrected as the sophistication in cyberattacks is increasing and they must be equipped with knowledge of the latest potential threat posed by this groups and to draw up updated DR plans in place.

#3. Inadequate budgetary considerations for DR

Organizations tend to neglect the aspects of preparing adequate financial resources for DR as most of the time the recovery objectives of the business are not aligned with the needs of the DR plan.  It’s impossible to develop a disaster recovery plan that is completely aligned with the needs of the business if a budget is assigned before assessing the financial impact of downtime. This is not an effective approach to disaster recovery; hence organizations must prepare adequate financial resources for the DR team in order to maintain organizational business continuity during severe disasters that could lead to downtimes.

Finally, to manage the challenges faced from DR, organizations could leverage some of the more critical functions of organization systems and data storage to cloud solutions. There are many developments in the cloud services that could be used by DR personal to minimise the risks for a sounder DR plan.