Prevent Data Loss With Interent Redundancy

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Redundancy connections are an important part of data network. Having redundancy in a network means that if any single part of the network goes down, the rest of the network can still communicate with each other. This can be applied a computer’s power source, a local network between computers, or even an internet connection. Read on to learn more about redundancy connections, and how they can save a business from massive loss.

 

What are Redundancy Connections 

In the computing world, redundancy is term that refers to duplicate devices that accomplish the same goal. Here are some forms of redundancy:

  • Having the hard drives in a computer in a RAID configuration, to avoid data loss in case one of them malfunctions

  • Having a backup local network, such as a wireless network, or a separate wired one, in case the main network is disrupted

  • Having a UPS (Uninterruptable Power Supply) hooked up to computers, which gives several minutes of battery life to desktop computers in case of power failure – enough time to save documents, and shut down safely

  • Having generator backup in case of loss of power to the building

  • Having a backup internet connection via a seperate source separate from the primary connection

The point of duplicating certain devices is to avoid potentially catastrophic loss of data or productivity, which would be caused by a device breaking, or going offline. A redundant connection is one that has multiple paths to its end goal, so if one of the paths goes down, the network is still able to operate.

 

Impact of Losing Internet Connection

One of the worst things to see! :(Many businesses rely on the internet to communicate with servers, verify customer payment information with banks, and backup data on a regular basis. What sort of impact could there be if the internet connection was lost? Read the following examples:

Example 1: A business is connected to its data center via a fiber internet connection, which services the rest of the neighbourhood around the business. Construction is happening in the neighbourhood and the fiber internet line is accidently cut, which immediately stops all web traffic that was intended to go through. Without a redundant connection from another source, that business is “stranded” in terms of both data backup, and communicating with any outside sources (such as a bank, to verify customer payment information). All productivity comes to a halt, and cannot resume until the line is fixed, which could be hours or days.

Example 2: After closing the night, a business’ computers are scheduled to backup all of the data from that day of work to the business’ off-site data backup location. However, the internet goes down in the evening and the backup is only half completed. The following day the information from the previous day is required, but upon looking at it, half of it is forever missing due to the loss of connection mid transit.

Example 3: A business loses its internet connection temporarily. During the outage, a customer tried to email the business with a high value commission, however due to the outage, the customer’s email stated that it was not able to send the email to the business, and the customer assumes that the business is highly unprofessional and does not have the correct email listed. As such he brings his work elsewhere, and the business loses out on a potential contract.

As shown in the examples, the loss of an internet connection can affect a business in many ways, be it the loss of a contract, loss of data, or the loss of money. All of the above examples could be avoided with the use of a redundant internet connection.

 

Identifying Connections Which Should Have Redundancy

A risk assessment table should be created in order to identify areas where redundancy is needed the most, the likelihood of losing an internet connection at least temporarily is very high, as such steps should be taken to prevent that. The following is a risk assessment table which can be used to evaluate which devices and services should have backup systems in place.

 

High Consequences (3)

Moderate Consequences (2)

Low Consequences (1)

High Likelihood (3)

Risk Level - 9

Risk Level - 6

Risk Level - 3

Moderate Likelihood (2)

Risk Level - 6

Risk Level - 4

Risk Level - 2

Low Likelihood(1)

Risk Level - 3

Risk Level - 2

Risk Level - 1

Anything with a high level of risk should be dealt with immediately, followed by the lower level items. Risk levels should be reviewed anually at minimum, and redundancy connections should be tested often. It's better to be proactive in protecting data and connections, then reactive, and already have a problem on hand.  


Recommendation

I recommend that all businesses implement redundancy into their essential devices and services immediately. The internet is something that nearly every business relies on, and should be one of the top priorities to keep online at all times. Packetworks can provide a fast and stable primary/secondary internet connection in order to prevent the loss of any productivity or data. 

 

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