How To Prepare for A Disaster Recovery Plan!

ISO 27001 Data Recovery Plan

Businesses operating on the Internet need to be carefully prepared for any untimely disasters. These include cybersecurity breaches caused by malware, ransomware, or malicious hackers, downtime and server failures caused by overwhelming traffic, software glitches or hardware malfunctions, supply chain disruptions, payment processing issues, changing legal and regulatory requirements, especially in areas of data privacy, taxation and consumer protection, and even, natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, or wildfires. 

This is why most compliance frameworks have a tried and tested disaster recovery plan. In the event of critical data loss and subsequent interruption in normal operational functionalities, a well-crafted disaster recovery plan helps ensure that your business environment can resume its efficiency in record time, preventing customers from walking away. But putting a strategy into action can be complicated; from comprehending the legal ramifications to setting up the right procedures, it might feel overwhelming for one person or a team.

This blog will discuss what comes under the disaster recovery plan for organizations using international standards such as ISO 27001. This article aims to educate you on the best practices provided by the ISO 27001 standard to build and establish an effective disaster recovery plan at your company so that you can properly dedicate time, responsibilities, and resources in the best way that gets your systems and operations up and running in no time!

What is an ISO 27001 Disaster Recovery Plan?

The ISO 27001 disaster recovery plan outlines the steps you can take if an incident affects your company’s information security systems. A good ISO disaster recovery strategy is adapted to the organization’s needs. It puts in place a number of mechanisms to guarantee that all data is frequently and securely backed up.

You can lessen the effects of an information security incident by implementing swift restoring methods if you have the necessary technological solutions, such as cloud computing, speedy data recovery, and encryption. Ensuring the plan works effectively to restore IT services within the agreed-upon timeline; otherwise, business continuity could suffer. 

In general, several factors go into crafting a disaster recovery plan using the guidelines highlighted in the ISO 27001 compliance framework. These include defining roles and duties for each stage of the procedure, outlining essential assets beforehand, and regularly evaluating your recovery strategies. 

This next section will see what a proper disaster recovery plan may include for your organization.

What is Included in an ISO 27001 Disaster Recovery Plan?

There are eight aspects of an ISO 27001 disaster recovery plan, explained in detail as follows:

  1. Disaster Recovery Flowchart

This is your illustrated roadmap to ensure the success of your disaster recovery plan, and it helps each personnel on the team understand their responsibilities and conduct evaluations accordingly. This flowchart demonstrates the exact tasks that must be carried out, who is in charge of each activity, and what resources (such as personnel, tools, and software) are needed to perform each task. Creating a successful recovery plan might be challenging, but employing a flowchart ensures that all important processes are organized and completed successfully. A good flowchart will outline exactly which tasks need to be done for the rollout of the overall recovery plan to go smoothly. For instance, an IT staff can find navigating the earliest steps after a disaster daunting – from system inventory to data backup. Going through each step on the roadmap should bring a sense of assurance that all areas have been covered in the event of a calamity.

  1. Appointment of a Disaster Recovery Team

A disaster recovery team can be crucial in reducing the likelihood of catastrophic losses. Companies with well-crafted strategies in place in the event of an untimely disaster that was swift to act on behalf of their staff and operations stand to recover much more quickly than those without. The disaster recovery team is simply a group of employees restarting business activities in case of a significant system breakdown. They are the ones to ensure all the actions that must be taken in case of a substantial system failure to resume business operations are followed through to continue normal operational functionalities. This specialized group is crucial for seeing prospective hazards, evaluating current weaknesses, and developing plans to ensure everyone’s safety in emergencies.

  1. Incidence Response Processes

Incidence responses are an organization’s guidelines for handling unprecedented disasters. This covers accidents like fires and floods, lost power, and broken hardware and software equipment. Incident management procedures aim to lessen an accident’s effects on the organization.

Identifying the severity level of an issue is the first step in controlling it. You can then prepare your response in light of this. Typical reactions include: 

  • alerting of emergency services; 
  • restoration of operations as soon as feasible; 
  • examining and implementing safety protocols; and,
  • interacting with the workforce and assigning responsibilities.
  1. Damage Evaluation Documentation

A damage assessment form can be useful to record the harm done to your systems and infrastructure. These forms are generally used by IT organizations, insurance companies, property owners, and others who need to record injuries for their records. The data collected on the form estimates the expense of repairs and other required resources.

The following items should be listed on a damage assessment form:

  • Date of occurrence of disaster;
  • Location of property/branch of the company; 
  • Name of the insuring entity; 
  • Images of the damages;
  • A detailed description of damages; and,
  • Estimated cost of repair or replacement.
  1. Data Center Resilience

Even if you are a software organization, it is essential to ensure you build a resilient physical data center. The physical infrastructure, which includes redundant network connectivity, cooling, and power systems, is crucial. With off-site data storage and backups for speedy restoration in the case of a breakdown, the backup and disaster recovery system must also be reliable. Many businesses utilize reputable cloud-based storage solutions as part of their data-resilience plan in addition to this physical layer of security. Preventing hardware failure makes it possible to recover quickly when necessary. It is crucial to have a well-thought-out plan in place for handling interruptions. The staff should know testing, backup, and disaster recovery methods.

  1. Disaster Risk Assessments

Helping communities and organizations lower their risk of encountering a disaster is one of the key goals of disaster risk assessments. You can lessen the impact of an untimely catastrophe by implementing mitigation measures in the most at-risk regions. Disaster risk assessments might also reveal the types of losses that can be anticipated during a disaster. Being aware of the vulnerabilities can result in effective resource allocation for readiness and reaction in the event of an incident. To cope with identified risks, organizations must have a structured risk treatment plan to minimize a disaster’s effects by identifying potential hazards, having ready-to-use strategies, and assigning responsibility during a crisis.

Mitigating risks may be performed in several ways —

  • Reduce the risk: The risk is decreased by lowering the likelihood that it will occur. For instance, you may establish a rule stating that laptops must be kept on the premises unless management permits their removal to reduce the chance of equipment provided to the employees being stolen.
  • Avoid the risk: The risk can be avoided by ceasing any operations that contribute to it. For instance, stationary computers can be utilized when practicable to reduce the possibility of equipment being stolen from the area.
  • Distribute the risk: To reduce the pressure on your organization, risks might be shared with a third-party organization. For instance, a security firm could be hired to handle security procedures.
  • Maintain and monitor the risk: You can hang on to risk if the cost of addressing it exceeds the harm it could create. Accepting it as a necessary evil for your organization would be best. However, this does not mean you cannot monitor it. It is advisable in such a situation to install continuous monitoring processes to track the events of the risk and be prepared for anything untoward happening, especially during peak times or seasons.
  1. Emergency Alert Notifications

There is only limited time to react and properly prepare for a high-level disaster. An emergency alert and escalation plan can be useful in such circumstances. This strategy should specify how staff members react to danger and the procedures for promptly transferring them before things get worse.

  1. Backup Security and Storage

Backup storage and security vary from one organization to the other. Physical backups stored off-site, cloud-based backups protected by advanced encryption methods, and encrypted remote backups should all be used to maintain the security of your data. Consider the security precautions you put in place at rest and while traveling. Multi-factor authentication procedures can be added to prevent unauthorized access, and effective Network Intrusion Detection systems can swiftly identify threats to your data. Protecting against natural disasters and malicious threats requires an efficient backup storage and security scheme.

Now, let’s see how having a disaster recovery plan for your organization complying with the ISO 27001 guidelines can be helpful.

Benefits of a ISO 27001 Disaster Recovery Plan

Here are five benefits of an ISO 27001 disaster recovery plan:

  1. Maintaining business continuity

A solid ISO 27001 disaster recovery strategy guarantees that your company’s activities can be resumed in the case of a problem, enabling you to reduce downtime and carry on without interruption.  

  1. Preventing any significant financial losses

An ISO 27001 disaster recovery strategy can assist in defending your business against conceivable monetary losses brought on by disruptions, such as the price of lost commercial opportunities or reputational harm.

  1. Ensuring data security and compliance

By offering safe backups and comprehensive instructions for restoring data after a catastrophic occurrence, a well-defined disaster recovery plan aids in the protection of sensitive data from unauthorized access.

Legal obligations to have an effective disaster recovery plan may apply to organizations subject to governmental or other regulatory restrictions. Your organization can achieve these compliance criteria by using ISO 27001 to help.

  1. Increasing efficiency and productivity

A disaster recovery plan gives staff members the confidence to respond swiftly and efficiently in an emergency rather than panicking. As a result, preparing for cybersecurity threats also enables quick and flexible decision-making in emergencies.

  1. Protecting the reputation of the organization 

An effective disaster recovery strategy can help lessen disruption’s effects on your business’s reputation. Customers and other stakeholders might also think more highly of a company that has received ISO 27001 certification and implements its guidelines to make an effective disaster recovery strategy.

ISO 27001 Compliance Readiness with Akitra!

Establishing trust is a crucial competitive differentiator when courting new SaaS businesses in today’s era of data breaches and compromised privacy. Customers and partners want assurances that their organizations are doing everything possible to prevent disclosing sensitive data and putting them at risk, and compliance certification fills that need.

Akitra offers an industry-leading, AI-powered Compliance Automation platform for SaaS companies. Using automated evidence collection and continuous monitoring, together with a full suite of customizable policies and controls as a compliance foundation, our compliance automation platform and service help our customers prepare readiness for the ISO 27001 compliance standard, along with other security frameworks like SOC 1, SOC 2, HIPAA, GDPR, PCI DSS, ISO 27701, ISO 27017, ISO 27018, NIST CSF, NIST 800-53, NIST 800-171, FedRAMP, CCPA, CMMC, and more such as CIS AWS Foundations Benchmark, etc. In addition, companies can use Akitra’s Risk Management product for overall risk management for your company, Trust Center, and AI-based Automated Questionnaire Response product to streamline and expedite security questionnaire response processes delivering huge cost savings. Our compliance and security experts will provide customized guidance to navigate the end-to-end compliance process confidently.

The benefits of our solution include enormous savings in time, human resources, and cost savings, including discounted audit fees with our audit firm partners. Customers achieve compliance certification fast and cost-effectively, stay continuously compliant as they grow, and can become certified under additional frameworks using a single compliance automation platform.

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