How many days will you be out of business if your office is caught in the path of a hurricane? With a busy Atlantic hurricane season already in full swing, now is the time to prepare before disaster strikes.
Here are 4 tips you can follow to ensure your business is prepared to weather the storm this upcoming hurricane season.
How to prepare your business for a hurricane
As many of us may be faced with one or two major storms this week, Cite Technology Solutions is working to help prepare and protect our customers valuable equipment and data.
1- Be prepared for power surges
Power surges are common during hurricanes, and they can be dangerous to almost anything that uses electricity to function.
If a power surge should occur, not only is your computer hardware subject to complete failure along with any data it stores, the complete transfer of data from one device to another can fail as well.
Power surges can occur even without a hurricane on your doorstep, so make sure your business's data is always protected.
Some of the basic steps to protect your technology include:
We recommend, for those near the storm path, to power off your computers and other equipment susceptible to power fluctuations and/or any potential water damage.
Also, we advice to also unplug your surge protector from the wall.
How our team can assist you:
We will be working to remotely power down servers during the most affected times, which at this time look to be Wednesday night and Thursday morning for most people.
2- Verify backups ahead of storm
You know the old saying, "you don't know what you have until it's gone"...
Yet, no one realizes how debilitating losing valuable data can be when your business relies on its protection and accessibility.
Hurricanes put your business's important data at a much higher risk of being lost. You may have insurance to cover your buildings, your physical equipment, and your employees may be willing to work, but without a backup, all the information your company relies on can be instantly lost.
According to FEMA, 40-60% of small businesses never recover from a natural disaster.
Some of the basic tips to backup your data include:
Identify your business's essential data that should be backed up.
Full backups should be performed weekly; if a large amount of data is generated by your business each day, you should back up your data even more frequently.
Cloud-based storage and business continuity solutions provide an effective way for your company to keep its data safely removed from your physical location.
3- Protect your equipment
Even if your electronic devices are completely covered by your business's insurance, you should still take some additional steps to protect them.
Before you leave the office, ensure your electronic devices are protected with these tips:
Elevate your CPUs, printers, servers, and other network devices off of the floor.
For high winds, move equipment away from windows.
If there is a possibility of water leakage, cover your equipment with plastic.
Some of the basic tips to safeguard your server equipment include:
Perform a normal shutdown of the servers.
Unplug all connections - take photos to document how things were prior to the event.
Firewalls, Switches, Access Points - unplug them from power. Unplug the firewall from the internet connection as well. Ideally, unplug all the network connections (surges can travel through the network cabling).
Battery Backups - power these off and then unplug them.
4- Take inventory
When a hurricane damages your property, you will have to deal with insurance claim adjusters who will determine what damages your insurance will pay. Chances are you are not going to be able to move your business's entire IT infrastructure out of the path of the hurricane.
Some of the basic tips to take inventory include:
We recommend for you to take inventory of every valuable asset on your business's property to ensure that all damaged items are accounted for.
Make sure to include the make, model, serial numbers of these assets as well as any licenses that you own.
List every detail about these items. By being descriptive, you ensure that you get the true price for your assets.
How our team can assist you
Cite Technology Solutions is working to help prepare and protect our customers valuable equipment and data by:
Verifying backups ahead of storm
Safeguarding networking and server equipment
Preparing a plan with customers for phone options for forwarding main phone lines. VOIP phone systems allow you to take your phone with you or answer business line from your cell phone.
Reviewing plans to work remotely via onsite servers and/or the cloud. Onsite servers may be offline for the duration of the storm if they are in the path mostly for protection of equipment.
Following these tips will give your business the best chance at minimizing downtime, data loss, and financial loss this hurricane season.
If you have a concern about any servers being powered down during this time frame, please send your request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For all of our managed backup customers, we are in the process of verifying that your offsite backup is working properly.
Should you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact us!
ABout CITE TEchnology
We provide comprehensive IT solutions for small and mid-sized organizations with complex needs. Offering 24/7 Tech Support, Remote Support and Cloud Storage. We specialize in data management, medical imaging, HL7 interfacing, and HIPAA compliance.