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Biz solutions: Protect your assets

Disaster preparedness plan for small and mid-sized businesses urged
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Failure of small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs), a vital driver to Asia Pacific and Japan's economy,  to come up with disaster preparedness plan could cost them huge financial losses, besides driving away their loyal and potential customers.

According to Symantec' s SMB Disaster Preparedness Survey, nearly half of  SMBs in the Asia Pacific and Japan region do not have plan disasters or business disruptions.

The subsequent cost of this lack of preparedness to their customers could reach as much as $15,000 per day on average and a downtime of eight hours or more.

Owing to this, the same study found that nearly half or 42 percent of SMB customers have actually switched vendors as their vendor's computer or technology systems were unreliable.

Although the region usually experiences three outages over a 12-month period, most SMBs are unaware of the potential losses and risks .
 
Among the SMBs polled, a majority (84 percent) feel protected against these potential disasters and two thirds (69 percent) believe their customers will understand and be patient if there is a disruption to their computer or technology resources.

But these are myths.

If a company is ill-prepared, it is unlikely that their customers will be patient and  have time  to wait for the problem to be fixed.

However, another myth is that disaster recovery is costly. This should never be viewed as something extravagant, but rather an improvement to a business' operational efficiency as well.

Disaster recovery planning can be had without breaking the bank.

Taking a more structured approach - a business must protect its most crucial assets first and prioritize the rest according to their importance.

Protecting these assets also means asking the right questions to ensure optimal disaster discovery results.

In the next article in this series--Who's backing you up?--we will discuss how small businesses can make mundane backup tasks simple and efficient.

i According to the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation

ii Symantec's SMB Disaster Preparedness Survey is the result of research conducted in August and September 2009 by Applied Research, which surveyed those responsible for computers and technology resources at small and midsized businesses. The report was designed to gauge the impact and stage of disaster recovery preparedness, perceptions and practices of small- and med-sized businesses. The study included more than 1650 respondents from 28 countries in North America, EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) Asia Pacific and Latin America.

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