Hurricane Tips to Prepare Your Business

Hurricane season is upon us and Dorian is now tracking towards the U.S. mainland.  Gov. Ron DeSantis has declared state of emergency for Florida.  We ourselves have been through quite a few Hurricane’s after living in FL during Hugo in 89′ as well as Andrew in 92′.  After relocating to NJ we then had Hurricane’s Irene in 2011 as well as Sandy in 2012.  The key is to prepare for the worst and hope for the best.  Your business is no different.  Here are some tips to help your business prepare before and after the Hurricane.

Disaster Recovery Checklist:

  • Check recent backups on all production machines. Remember that you can use the Status Page to ensure all expected volumes are protected.
  • Ensure recent backups were sent successfully to the cloud (or other DR site) for each production machine.
  • Verify recent functional screenshots of each production machine to validate your ability to recover.
  • Make sure that any site you/your end users go to have power generation, Internet, and cell phone connectivity.
  • Take corrective action as soon as possible, make sure you have direct contact numbers for the key people with your IT department and/or service providers
  • Make sure your repository for information on how to run disaster recoveries as well as an easy way to get in contact with your disaster recovery vendors are up to date including any license renewals and support contracts

Business Checklist:

  • Create a phone tree for your organization and stay in touch, include cell phone numbers.
  • Have a plan and contingencies.
    • What do you need to take from your office?
    • How will you support your customers, and from where?
    • Are your backup battery units fairly new? Have they been tested recently?
    • Will you shutdown key servers and systems before the Hurricane hits to help prevent damage?
      • Battery backup systems have been proven to reduce the risk of systems damage but are not always fool proof as they only can keep the systems up for a finite amount of time.
      • It may be better to have your systems down while the Hurricane comes ashore with a few hours of downtime versus days or weeks if the systems are running and become damaged.
  • Send out the Hurricane plan to your employees, customers, and partners. Include a communications schedule and stick to it.
    • Send an update to employees every few hours with what you know and don’t know.
    • Send updates to customers, partners, and suppliers with updates that affect them regularly.
  • If your business cannot withstand a period of lengthy downtime, secure a facility further inland for you and your employees or ensure everyone is able to work remotely.
  • Tropical storms can put data centers out of commission. Make sure your business data, backups, applications, and server images are stored off-site.
    • Your IT professionals will be able to restore systems either virtually via the cloud or at the site where you’re resuming operations.
    • If time allows, test the backups of crucial servers before the Hurricane hits.

If you need an extra set of eyes to make sure your business continuity and disaster recovery plans are up to date, contact us! 888-800-4644

For more information on our Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery services you can go to our BCDR Page.

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