This policy defines acceptable methods for disaster recovery planning, preparedness, management and mitigation of IT systems and services at Weill Cornell Medical College.
The ITS Disaster Recovery Program (DRP) addresses the protection and recovery of WCMC IT services so that critical operations and services are recovered in a timeframe that ensures the survivability of WCMC and is commensurate with customer obligations, business necessities, industry practices, and regulatory requirements. Plans must be developed, tested, and maintained to support the 2.a objectives of the Program, and those plans should include relevant IT infrastructure, computer systems, network elements, and applications. The Disaster Recovery Manager is responsible for conducting Business Impact Analyses (BIA) to identify the critical business processes, determine standard recovery timeframes, and establish the criticality ratings for each; at least every other years. A Risk Assessment must be conducted at least every other year to determine threats to disaster recovery and their likelihood of impacting the IT infrastructure. The IT Disaster Recovery Manager should be part of the ITS representation within the institution's Emergency Management Team . Each IT division must develop and maintain a documented emergency plan including notification procedures.
IT DR plans must provide information on Business Impact Analysis, Data Backup, Recovery, Business Resumption, Administration, Organization Responsibilities, Emergency Response & Operations, Training and Awareness and Testing. ITS must maintain a single, comprehensive electronic inventory of all servers, network equipment, relevant configuration, and model information, and the applications they support.
Upon completion or update, DR plans must be sent to the Disaster Recovery Manager and ITS Change Manager for review. The ITS Disaster Recovery Manager is required to provide DR training and awareness activities at least twice per year. IT managers are responsible for briefing staff on their roles and responsibilities related to DR planning, including developing, updating, and testing plans. Traditional disaster recovery is a complex endeavour, involving expensive capacity planning and cutover (switch-over) systems that meet the demands of business. During an outage, IT Managers may incur special recovery and restoration costs that are unbudgeted. With our cloud based disaster recovery services, the DR site is up and running immediately, whereas the physical DR site may take much longer time (even a few hours) to take over from the main site in the event of a disaster.
Once your original site has been restored after the disaster, you can simply stop paying for the cloud servers.
This Disaster Recovery Plan will help you establish procedures to recover systems following a disruption. Preparation for Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity in light of SOX has two primary parts. Click on the link below to get the Disaster Planning and Business Continuity Planning Template full table of contents and selected sample pages now and make it part of your Disaster Recovery Planning toolkit. Also, since our DR site is up and running within minutes of the main site being hit by a disaster, chances of data loss are significantly reduced. Even if you have never built a Disaster Recovery plan before, you can achieve great results. For others, information technology may play a more pivotal role, and the Business Continuity Disaster Recovery Plan may have more of a focus on systems recovery.
Good feedback for my Pocket Survival Kit information technology disaster recovery plan template from very good to non-existent, every single member of our team. This paper discusses an approach for creating a good disaster recovery plan for a business enterprise.
The process of preparing a disaster recovery plan begins by identifying these causes and effects, analyzing their likelihood and severity, and ranking them in terms of their business priority. Once the disaster risks have been assessed and the decision has been made to cover the most critical risks, the next step is to determine and list the likely effects of each of the disasters. How the disaster affected entities depend upon each other is crucial information for preparing the recovery sequence in the disaster recovery plan. Quick and precise detection of a disaster event and having an appropriate communication plan are the key for reducing the effects of the incoming emergency; in some cases it may give enough time to allow system personnel to implement actions gracefully, thus reducing the impact of the disaster.
Disaster Recovery traditionally relates to preserving the technology and information critical to an organization by setting up a remote Disaster Recovery location that takes regular backups, This alternate location can then ensure your business's continuity and support business function when calamity strikes. Learn how to develop disaster recovery strategies as well as how to write a disaster recovery plan with these step-by-step instructions.
Once you have identified your critical systems, RTOs, RPOs, etc, create a table, as shown below, to help you formulate the disaster recovery strategies you will use to protect them.
The following section details the elements in a DR plan in the sequence defined by ISO 27031 and ISO 24762.
Important: Best-in-class DR plans should begin with a few pages that summarise key action steps (such as where to assemble employees if forced to evacuate the building) and lists of key contacts and their contact information for ease of authorising and launching the plan. The best strategy is to have some kind of disaster recovery plan in place, to return to normal after the disaster has struck. The ultimate results are a formal assessment of risk, a disaster recovery plan that includes all available recovery mechanisms, and a formalized Disaster Recovery Committee that has responsibility for rehearsing, carrying out, and improving the disaster recovery plan. Figure 1 depicts the cycle of stages that lead through a disaster back to a state of normalcy. Only when these are assessed and the affected systems are identified can a recovery process begin. The effects of a disaster that strikes the entire enterprise are different from the effects of a disaster affecting a specific area, office, or utility within the company. In Figure 3, the entities that fail due to the earthquake disaster are office facility, power system, operations staff, data systems, and telephone system.
During a disaster, this committee ensures that there is proper coordination between different agencies and that the recovery processes are executed successfully and in proper sequence.
Execution Phase: In this phase, the actual procedures to recover each of the disaster affected entities are executed. It is in these plans that you will set out the detailed steps needed to recover your IT systems to a state in which they can support the business after a disaster. Procedures should ensure an easy-to-use and repeatable process for recovering damaged IT assets and returning them to normal operation as quickly as possible. The next section should define roles and responsibilities of DR recovery team members, their contact details, spending limits (for example, if equipment has to be purchased) and the limits of their authority in a disaster situation. Effects of disasters range from small interruptions to total business shutdown for days or months, even fatal damage to the business. The disaster recovery system cannot replace the normal working system forever, but only supports it for a short period of time. Recovery from this type of failure may be lengthy and expensive due to the need to replace or update software and equipment and retrain personnel.
The entities with less downtime tolerance limit should be assigned higher priorities for recovery. Depending on the data system, there may be options of autorecovery or manual recovery, and the cost and recovery time factors of each mechanism vary. And since DR planning generates a significant amount of documentation, records management (and change management) activities should also be initiated. Included within this part of the plan should be assembly areas for staff (primary and alternates), procedures for notifying and activating DR team members, and procedures for standing down the plan if management determines the DR plan response is not needed.


Up, it really is time for her system disaster recovery plan to locate a property of her he mentioned that in reality, unless the.
Once your disaster recovery strategies have been developed, you’re ready to translate them into disaster recovery plans.
Disaster recovery risk assessment and business impact analysis (BIA) are crucial steps in the development of a disaster recovery plan. In disaster recovery (DR) planning, once you've completed a business impact analysis (BIA), the next step is to perform a risk assessment. This chart identifies natural and man-made disasters that could adversely impact an organization. Then, you’ll need to establish recovery time objectives (RTOs) and recovery point objectives (RPOs). These are essential in that they ensure employees are fully aware of DR plans and their responsibilities in a disaster, and DR team members have been trained in their roles and responsibilities as defined in the plans.
Such plans provide a step-by-step process for responding to a disruptive event with steps designed to provide an easy-to-use and repeatable process for recovering damaged IT assets to normal operation as quickly as possible. Once a specific threat and its associated vulnerability have been identified, it becomes easier to plan the most effective defensive strategy.
Then define step-by-step procedures to, for example, initiate data backup to secure alternate locations, relocate operations to an alternate space, recover systems and data at the alternate sites, and resume operations at either the original site or at a new location. Here we can see the critical system and associated threat, the response strategy and (new) response action steps, as well as the recovery strategy and (new) recovery action steps. The more detailed the plan is, the more likely the affected IT asset will be recovered and returned to normal operation.
This section defines the criteria for launching the plan, what data is needed and who makes the determination. Those events with the highest risk factor are the ones your disaster recovery plan should primarily aim to address. The disaster recovery standards in this policy provide a systematic approach for safeguarding the vital technology and data managed by the Information Technologies and Services Department. The Disaster Recovery Manager is responsible for conducting Capability Analyses (CA) to determine ITS's capacity to recover critical IT services that support defined critical business processes and recovery objectives; at least every other years. IT Managers are responsible for tracking and reporting on planned and unplanned outage spending related to the recovery and restoration effort. Technological solutions for data availability, data protection, and application recovery must be considered by data gathered by the BIA and CA. All Backup data must be labeled and logged, and are available for use during an emergency within stated recovery time objectives. Plans must identify risk exposure and either accept the risk or propose mitigation solution(s). This Disaster Recovery Plan template describes the IT framework and procedures to be activated in the event of a disaster occurring. In most organizations, Disaster Recovery Planning is the quintessential complex, unfamiliar task. Disaster Recovery Business Continuity Template (WORD) - comes with the latest electronic forms and is fully compliant with all mandated US, EU, and ISO requirements. This process turns out to be not only expensive, but also time consuming and recovery time going upto days. This DR Plan includes a 32 page MS Word template and 7 Excel spreadsheets as well as Business Impact Analysis, Damage Assessment Report and Test Report templates.
When a disaster strikes, the normal operations of the enterprise are suspended and replaced with operations spelled out in the disaster recovery plan. Simple "one cause multiple effects" diagrams (Figure 3) can be used as tools for specifying the effects of each of the disasters. Once the list of affected entities is prepared and each entity's business criticality and failure tendency is assessed, it is time to analyze various recovery methods available for each entity and determine the best suitable recovery method for each. Formulating a detailed recovery plan is the main aim of the entire IT disaster recovery planning project.
In addition to using the strategies previously developed, IT disaster recovery plans should form part of an incident response process that addresses the initial stages of the incident and the steps to be taken. Though both concepts are related to business continuity, high availability is about providing undisrupted continuity of operations whereas disaster recovery involves some amount of downtime, typically measured in days. The plan should also define how to restore operations to a normal state once the disaster's effects are mitigated. A key factor in evaluating risks associated with telephone systems is to study the telephone architecture and determine if any additional infrastructure is required to mitigate the risk of losing the entire telecommunication service during a disaster. This information becomes crucial for preparing the recovery sequence in the disaster recovery plan.
This committee should have representation from all the different company agencies with a role in the disaster recovery process, typically management, finance, IT (multiple technology leads), electrical department, security department, human resources, vendor management, and so on. This process can be seen as a timeline, such as in Figure 2, in which incident response actions precede disaster recovery actions.
Finally, ongoing procedures for testing and improving the effectiveness of the disaster recovery system are part of a good disaster recovery plan. Procedures should contain the process to alert recovery personnel during business and nonbusiness hours. To minimize disaster losses, it is very important to have a good disaster recovery plan for every business subsystem and operation within an enterprise. Check with your vendors while developing your DR plans to see what they have in terms of emergency recovery documentation.
To do that, let us remind ourselves of the overall goals of disaster recovery planning, which are to provide strategies and procedures that can help return IT operations to an acceptable level of performance as quickly as possible following a disruptive event. Here we’ll explain how to write a disaster recovery plan as well as how to develop disaster recovery strategies.
Based on the findings from incident response activities, the next step is to determine if disaster recovery plans should be launched, and which ones in particular should be invoked. But, before we look at them in detail, we need to locate disaster recovery risk assessment and business impact assessment in the overall planning process.
By contrast, man-made events are those in which an individual or multiple persons may be held accountable for contributing to the event(s) that caused the disaster. This section should specify who has approved the plan, who is authorised to activate it and a list of linkages to other relevant plans and documents.
The strategies you define for risks can next be used to help design business continuity and disaster recovery strategies. Technology DR plans can be enhanced with relevant recovery information and procedures obtained from system vendors.
The Disaster Recovery Manager is responsible for maintaining the Recovery Tier Chart , which defines the Recovery Time Objectives (RTO) and Recovery Point Objectives (RPO) of all ITS-managed systems. Backup strategies must comply with predefined businesses continuity requirements, including defined recovery time and point objectives.
All Business Continuity Disaster Recovery Planning efforts need to encompass how employees will communicate, where they will go and how they will keep doing their jobs.


Included with the template are Electronic Forms which have been designed to lower the cost of maintenance of the plan. It describes the IT framework and procedures to be activated in the event of a disaster occurring. The disaster recovery plan does not stop at defining the resources or processes that need to be in place to recover from a disaster.
The intention of this exercise is to produce a list of entities affected by failure due to disasters, which need to be addressed by the disaster recovery plan. In the case of data systems, for example, the recovery mechanism usually involves having the critical data systems replicated somewhere else in the network and putting them online with the latest backed up data available. An effective disaster recovery plan plays its role in all stages of the operations as depicted above, and it is continuously improved by disaster recovery mock drills and feedback capture processes. A hurricane affecting a specific geographic area, or a virus spread expected on a certain date are examples of disasters with advance notice. And the fourth section explains what information the disaster recovery plan should contain and how to maintain the disaster recovery plan.
At the earliest possible time, the disaster recovery process must be decommissioned and the business should return to normalcy. Once this work is out of the way, you’re ready to move on to developing disaster recovery strategies, followed by the actual plans. Having established our mission, and assuming we have management approval and funding for a disaster recovery initiative, we can establish a project plan. A section on plan document dates and revisions is essential, and should include dates of revisions, what was revised and who approved the revisions. If DR plans are to be invoked, incident response activities can be scaled back or terminated, depending on the incident, allowing for launch of the DR plans.
If your organisation already has records management and change management programmes, use them in your DR planning.
ITS is required to create disaster recovery plans for the IT portion - including services, systems, and assets - of critical business processes. Approved recovery strategies must be tested to ensure they meet required recovery time and recovery point objectives.
But the critical point is that neither element can be ignored, and physical, IT and human resources plans cannot be developed in isolation from each other.
What's more, the myriad interconnected data, application and other resources that must be recovered after a disaster make recovery an exceptionally difficult and error-prone effort. The second section of this paper explains the methods and procedures involved in the disaster recovery planning process.
It may be noticed that two or more disasters may affect the same entities, and it can be determined which entities are affected most often. Considering multiple options and variations of disaster recovery mechanisms available, it is necessary to carefully evaluate the best suitable recovery mechanism for an affected entity in a particular organization. The likelihood that something happens should be considered in a long plan period, such as 5 years. At the end of this phase, recovery staff will be ready to execute contingency actions to restore system functions on a temporary basis. To mitigate the risk of disruption of business operations, a recovery solution should involve disaster recovery facilities in a location away from the affected area. Nowadays most of the meteorological threats can be forecasted, hence the chances to mitigate effects of some natural disasters are considerable. A disaster recovery project has a fairly consistent structure, which makes it easy to organise and conduct plan development activity.
Once the plan has been launched, DR teams take the materials assigned to them and proceed with response and recovery activities as specified in the plans. This includes potential damage the events could cause, the amount of time needed to recover or restore operations, and preventive measures or controls that can mitigate the likelihood of the event occurring. Recovery strategies must be implemented within a previously agreed upon period of time, generally not more than 180 days after management approval. For some businesses, issues such as supply chain logistics are most crucial and are the focus on the plan.
The first step in planning recovery from unexpected disasters is to identify the threats or risks that can bring about disasters by doing risk analysis covering threats to business continuity. Once the list of entities that possibly fail due to various types of disasters is prepared, the next step is to determine what is the downtime tolerance limit for each of the entities. The roles, responsibilities, and reporting hierarchy of different committee members should be clearly defined both during normal operations and in the case of a disaster emergency. A higher value would mean longer restoration time hence the priority of having a Disaster Recovery mechanism for this risk is higher. After the disaster detection, a notification should be sent to the damage assessment team, so that they can assess the real damage occurred and implement subsequent actions. As you can see from The IT Disaster Recovery Lifecycle illustration, the IT disaster recovery process has a standard process flow.
Located at the end of the plan, these can include systems inventories, application inventories, network asset inventories, contracts and service-level agreements, supplier contact data, and any additional documentation that will facilitate recovery. The document is Special Publication 800-30, Risk Management Guide for Information Technology Systems. The second is to clearly and expressly document all these procedures so that in the event of a SOX audit, the auditors clearly see that the Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Plan exists and appropriately protects the data and assets of the enterprise.. Human caused: These disasters include acts of terrorism, sabotage, virus attacks, operations mistakes, crimes, and so on. The cost of downtime is the main key to calculate the investment needed in a disaster recovery plan. Note that not all the members of the Disaster Recovery Committee may actively participate in the actual disaster recovery. Following the BIA and risk assessment, the next steps are to define, build and test detailed disaster recovery plans that can be invoked in case disaster actually strikes the organisation’s critical IT assets.
Supplier: These risks are tied to the capacity of suppliers to maintain their level of services in a disaster. Detailed response planning and the other key parts of disaster recovery planning, such as plan maintenance, are, however, outside the scope of this article so let us get back to looking at disaster recovery risk assessment and business impact assessment in detail. Water: There are certain disaster scenarios where water outages must be considered very seriously, for instance the impact of a water cutoff on computer cooling systems. For an enterprise, a disaster means abrupt disruption of all or part of its business operations, which may directly result in revenue loss.



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