Technology Newsletter July 2015

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Technology Newsletter  July 2015
 
 

Welcome

Welcome to the July edition of the brightstack technology newsletter! The purpose of this newsletter is to keep you informed of the latest technology news. We hope you will find this information useful and will help you to become more productive by getting the most value from your partnership with brightstack! For more information on any of these items please reach out to your account manager or call us at 212-812-9450 option 2.
 
Hurricanes, Water, Earthquakes, and Flares: How the Cloud protects your Data from Natural Disasters
 
 

When faced with hurricanes, earthquakes, geomagnetic storms, and floods, company data is safer in the cloud than anywhere else. Traditional data centers are built strong to protect against natural disasters, but when it comes time for your data to evacuate, it needs to have somewhere to go. The cloud offers that protection with multiple levels of redundancy across the world, so your data will survive even if one location is hit or damaged. Here are four scenarios the cloud protects you from:

1. Hurricanes

Protecting data during a hurricane is no easy feat. For data centers outside of a hurricane’s direct path, “hardening” is a viable option. A hardened data center has hurricane shields for all windows and doors, is located on and upper floor (above the parking lot, for example), and comes equipped with flood precautions such as pumps.

But as Hurricane Sandy proved in 2012, even the best facility designs do little for protection when in the storm’s direct path. The storm tested the value of cloud services, colocation, and redundant facilities, proving that data is more secure when not tied to a single location. Some of the lessons learned from Hurricane Katrina in 2004 proved invaluable in 2012, including the need for redundant backups outside of the hurricane area.

2. Earthquakes

Data center providers know how to protect infrastructure. “Racks need to be bolted down and use seismic restraints, and the facility must have multiple layers of redundancy,” writes Jason Verge for Data Center Knowledge. “While the facility may navigate through an earthquake, it’s the outside infrastructure that poses the biggest threat,” writes Verge.

The cloud offers that protection with multiple levels of redundancy across the world. so your data will survive even if one location is hit or damaged.

No matter how well prepared the data center provider is, unexpected damage because of external surroundings can put customer data at risk. Verge recommends that data center customers have a second deployment outside of known fault zones.

3. Solar flares

One threat you might not often think of is solar flares. Solar flares, or coronal mass ejections, are events in which the sun flings large amounts of energy and particles into space. If this discharge hits the Earth, it can produce phenomena (like the auroras), but it can also damage and destroy electrical systems not unlike an electromagnetic pulse (EMP).

Many of the precautions for geomagnetic storms are the same as for other disasters (backup power supplies, a disaster recovery plan, etc). Unlike other natural disasters that simply damage physical infrastructure, solar flares affect electrical systems and can cause months-long outages in certain regions. The only real solution is to have cross-region backup of all your data.

4. Floods

As the world gets warmer and the sea level continues to rise, coastal data centers need to protect against flooding. Emergency backup generators need to be made flood proof, and there needs to be enough fuel stored to last for days. However, at the end of the day, if a data center is in the wrong spot at the wrong time, even the best-made plan might not be enough to keep it online.

Even companies outside of regular flood zones should be aware of this contingency; earlier this month, for example, Phoenix experienced record-breaking flash flooding following the largest single day’s rain ever recorded in the normally dry city.

Surviving disaster

According to Tony Surma, CTO of Microsoft Disaster Response, “the awareness that information is a basic need in disaster response—right along with food, water, and shelter—is driving use of the cloud.” When data is stored in the cloud, companies can “rapidly deploy resources on demand and accommodate large spikes in traffic regardless of local conditions.” This way the cloud protects your data no matter the disaster.

 

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brightstack publishes a ShoreTel and Technology newsletter each month to keep our users informed and up to date with the latest offerings and news.
 
 
 
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