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Every business must have a business continuity plan that will secure the future of the business in the long-term. Ensure there is continuity in delivering services and products by putting in place critical infrastructure. Inculcate confidence in the business by ensuring there is no negative perception by your employees and customers. Retain their confidence even when recovering from a disaster. Having an effective plan ensures the business maintains good performance despite disasters it is facing. A good plan reduces disruption costs and the company benefits from insurance premium discounts. This enables the business to eliminate excesses and open doors to  better insurance products. Having a solid business continuity plan enables you to get coverage for unacceptable risks.

As a business, aim to protect your service delivery and operations by ensuring it does not fail under any circumstance. The plan enables you to make quick decisions to safeguard the business. The business must have a better response to disruptions so as to minimize the impact on service delivery to customers.

Put in place support resources from other departments to boost areas experiencing disruptions. A solid continuity plan enables you to build a strong customer confidence and gaining their trust. You can increase your appeal to consumer regulated markets. Customers value reliable services. Therefore, ensure the business is competent even amidst disasters. The senior management team should give quick responses to protect the livelihood of employees by increasing confidence in the workforce.

The business must comply with set regulations and laws to reduce  disruptions.  These regulatory requirements include tax and money laundering laws. A good plan helps mitigate financial exposures and business risks. This minimizes financial losses and mitigation reduces financial losses and protects the business.

When it comes to apps, there are two big choices: the native app meant for use on a particular device, and the web app that resides on a server and is accessible by any device with Internet access. While the native app has its benefits, the fact that copies of itself exist in each device using it introduces a number of problems. One of these is it uses up space on the device. This makes people reluctant about using up their devices’ memory by installing too many apps. The more apps they already have, the less inclined they are to installing another one. So, why should you use application hosting?

On the other hand, a web app doesn’t have this problem because only one exists on its server and no app download is required. This also means that the web app user needn’t be concerned about app updates. As long as it accommodates the screen sizes of different mobile devices, the web app is also device independent. This allows a much larger customer base for the business using a web app as SaaS.

One of the greatest strengths of the web app, is its access to a central data base that can be shared by all who use the app. This makes it immensely useful in the business environment where collaboration and real-time access to important business data, such as inventory, are essential.

In-House Server or Application Hosting?

If you’re sold on using a web app, an important decision to make is where it will reside. Should you place it on your own server or use application hosting? Unless you want to get into the data center business, application hosting is the best choice. It allows you to focus on your web applications and their business uses, rather than hardware upkeep.

Using Whoa’s application hosting means you can rest assured that you and your web app customers will always have access to your apps. This is important when your business profits depend on it. For answers to any questions you might have on application hosting, don’t hesitate to contact us.

The Domain Name System (DNS) is a critical component of almost every business operating today. Despite the fact that DNS is crucial for ongoing operations very few organizations give a lot of thought to the security and business continuity of DNS. Think about it, without DNS there is no website, no applications, no email, and possibly no business. Outsourcing your DNS can improve your business continuity and security.

DNS is the underlying protocol that translates the IP addresses that underpin the Internet to human readable domain names. So, instead of having to remember 23.50.225.123 you can just type www.whoa.com into your browser. DNS does more than just translate IP addresses to domain names, it is also used to tell mail servers where to direct e-mail, and it can be used to load balance busy websites across multiple servers.

Given the importance of DNS it is surprising that most organizations trust their DNS management to their domain registrar without giving any thought to whether or not that domain registrar can meet the needs of the organization. Most domain registrars include basic DNS management at no cost. This can be adequate for small organizations, but often these organizations quickly outgrow the capabilities offered by most registrars.

Even small businesses can impacted by the limited capabilities of domain registrars. One common method hackers use to gain access to a domain is by using social engineering against the domain registrar, as was the case against a large Brazilian financial organization last year. The hackers contact the domain registrar pretending to be the owners of the domain and convince the registrar to point DNS entries to servers controlled by the hackers. The organization’s entire infrastructure is compromised and it can take days to get it restored.

That is where Cloud DNS services, like those offered by WHOA, can benefit even small organizations. To start, all WHOA Cloud DNS services have two-factor authentication. An attacker can’t just claim to represent your organization, they have to actually authenticate properly or they cannot make changes. In addition to two-factor authentication WHOA also offer role-based access control to our Cloud DNS services. This allows organizations to assign certain people control over specific domains or even specific management features, ensuring that only trusted administrators have full control over an organization’s domain infrastructure.

Of course, Cloud DNS is not just about managing access, it is also means providing robust DNS services. WHOA’s Cloud DNS can help improve your business continuity with 60 second DNS propagation. Let’s say that there is a cascading failure in your primary data center you can activate your disaster recovery site and within 60 seconds DNS, globally, will be pointing to your backup infrastructure. Instead of having to wait hours or days for recovery, you can be back up and running before your customers know there was a problem.

Of course this capability isn’t just useful for accidental failures. Hackers have gotten bolder about launching DDoS attacks against a wide range of companies, often accompanied by demands for ransom in order for them to stop. These DDoS attacks tend to focus on the IP addresses of the target servers. If your organization is under attack you can simply point your DNS to your back up systems and avoid any service disruption while you are dealing with the attackers.

Whether you are interested in Cloud DNS for security or business continuity purposes contact us to find out more about how WHOA can assist your organization.

Does your business have a disaster recovery plan? Have you reviewed it recently? If your disaster recovery plan has always been an afterthought, it’s time to transform your thinking and create a plan that will help bring your business back up in the event of an emergency. If your disaster recovery plan doesn’t contain these key elements, it might be time for a redesign.

1. Business Continuity Plans

Can your business keep running in spite of a disaster? Do you have a plan in place that will enable you to, for example, shift operation to another location or to bring your vital systems back up in the event of a disaster? The more effective your business continuity plan, the better the odds you’ll be able to keep things running smoothly in spite of a disaster.

2. Contingency Plans

Your disaster recovery plan needs to include elements that will enable you to respond in the event of several types of disasters–and you need contingency plans for as many possibilities as possible. The greater your contingency planning, the greater the likelihood that you’ll be able to bring vital systems back up fast in the event of a disaster.

3. Instructions for Employees

How is each employee expected to respond in the event of a disaster? Who is responsible for taking care of vital tasks? Employees need to know how to respond, whether you’re dealing with a system-wide hack or a weather emergency that has forced you to shut down your physical location. Make sure your disaster recovery plan includes clear instructions for the most important employees and how they should react to emergencies–as well as contingency plans in case those employees aren’t available.

By making sure your disaster recovery plan includes these three elements, you’ll be able to keep your business rolling more smoothly in the event of an emergency. Disasters happen. If your business isn’t prepared to respond, contact us today to learn how we can help.

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