Data Risks

Your data is susceptible to loss or damage or both from several sources. Some key causes of data loss include:

Viruses: These malicious programs can get into your system at any time and strike when you least expect it. Once you are infected, the virus can spread from system to system, destroying data along the way.

Natural Disasters: Fire, flood, and high winds can all cause physical damage to systems and make your data unavailable or unreadable.

Human-Created Outages: Systems can be damaged by a sudden loss of power, or may even be a small part of the data stream can be lost – both causing damage that may not be readily apparent.

Hard Drive Crash: It’s not if a hard drive will fail, but when will it happen. A hard drive is most likely to fail within 90 days of being placed in service and about three years of average use.

Laptop or Smartphone Loss or Theft: The value of the data stored on a laptop or other portable device usually far exceeds the cost of replacing the hardware.

Software Failures: Operating systems and storage area network software can fail, corrupting existing data.

Application Failures: Applications are not guaranteed to be bug free. A bug can cause incomplete or incorrectly formatted or calculated data to be written into your files.

Vendor Failure: If you are housing e-commerce or other applications with Software as a Service vendor, your data could be at risk if the vendor suddenly goes out of business.

Accounting for all of these Risks is key in your BC/DR Recovery plans. Including this in your training will help prevent these Risks from occurring, and when they do occur your staff will know how to respond.


Michael Herrera is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of MHA. In his role, Michael provides global leadership to the entire set of industry practices and horizontal capabilities within MHA. Under his leadership, MHA has become a leading provider of Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery services to organizations on a global level. He is also the founder of BCMMETRICS, a leading cloud based tool designed to assess business continuity compliance and residual risk. Michael is a well-known and sought after speaker on Business Continuity issues at local and national contingency planner chapter meetings and conferences. Prior to founding MHA, he was a Regional VP for Bank of America, where he was responsible for Business Continuity across the southwest region.

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