Seven Tiers of Disaster Recovery – Which Tier is Your Enterprise?

July 18, 2023

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For IT leaders, protecting critical assets and maintaining business continuity is paramount. According to LogicMonitor’s 2023 IT Outage Impact Study, 96% of IT decision-makers surveyed had experienced at least one outage in the past three years. The same study found that companies with frequent outages and brownouts experienced up to 16x higher costs than companies with fewer instances of downtime. With this in mind, disaster recovery planning is a worthwhile investment for enterprises. The seven tiers of disaster recovery maturity for enterprises are outlined below.

Tier 0: Potential no recovery, no off-site data

This 0-level tier indicates an organization with no business continuity plan, no saved information, no documentation, and no backup. They may lose everything.

Tier 1: Backup data with no “hot site”

Tier 1 refers to an organization that sends backup data to an off-site storage facility, for example, backing up and taking it to a remote location. If a disaster hits, the organization must be prepared to suffer several days to weeks of data loss. This tier lacks systems to restore data fully.

Tier 2: Backup data with a “hot site”

Tier 2 describes an organization that backups data frequently. They combine an off-site facility and “hot site” to restore systems from backups during a disaster. Recovery time in Tier 2 is more predictable but will still result in the need to recreate hours or days’ worth of data.

Tier 3: Electronic vaulting

Tier 3 has the major components of Tier 2, such as off-site backups, a Disaster Recovery Plan, and a “hot site.” However, Tier 3 augments backup through electronically vaulted data. Recovery time is estimated to be about 24 hours.

Tier 4: Point-in-time copies

This tier solution is used by organizations that require both greater data currency and faster recovery than the users of the lower tiers. Tier 4 solutions incorporate more disk-based solutions. Data loss of several hours is still possible, but it is easier to make point-in-time copies with increased frequency.

Tier 5: Transaction integrity

Organizations that use Tier 5 solutions require data consistency between the production data center and recovery data centers. There is little or no data loss in these solutions.

Tier 6: Zero or near-zero data loss

Tier 6 solutions exemplify the highest levels of data currency – with little or no tolerance for data loss. Restoration of data needs is a high priority. Tier 6 solutions often require disk mirroring or automated tape solutions.

Tier 7: Highly automated, business integrated solution

The top tier, Tier 7, incorporates all the components used for Tier 6 solutions with integrated automation. Recovery of applications is automated and brings a faster restoration of systems.

Planning Help

If you are not sure which tier best fits your enterprise or are looking to improve your disaster recovery or business continuity plan, Dewpoint is here for you. We start by evaluating your current plans and offering recommendations to improve them, so you are ready when disaster strikes. In this world of uncertainty, Dewpoint has qualified experts ready to help. Call us today.

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