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Survey: 65 percent of public sector organizations not prepared for a disaster

Limitations in available budget resources and a general lack of interest among business managers in anything to do with technology and data protection is making it difficult for public sector organizations to develop disaster recovery strategies. According to a recent survey performed by the Ponemon Institute, approximately 65 percent of participants of a global public sector survey said their organization would experience an extended period of downtime in the event of an unplanned outage.

As if these statistics were not troubling enough, two-thirds of respondents said their disaster recovery strategies were not well managed and 45 percent of those polled explained that business leaders are not supportive of efforts to improve backup and recovery.

The problems do not end there, as most IT leaders have also been pushed away so thoroughly when discussing disaster recovery that they are not in a hurry to tell the business managers how important the process is. During 2011, the world witnessed an unusually high number of natural disasters, clearly displaying just how critical disaster recovery has become. However, just 21 percent of respondents said they took advantage of the opportunity to show business managers how the natural disasters point to the need for new backup and recovery strategies.

While many public sector organizations are struggling with disaster recovery, they may have found an answer in the cloud. According to the study, 92 percent of respondents expect to begin using the cloud during the next 12 months, while 55 percent expect the move to the cloud to deliver considerable cost gains. At the same time, the vast majority of those polled also said they have no plans in action when it comes to backing the cloud up.

IT outsourcing is one way to backup the cloud. Whether it is turning to a colocation provider to replicate a private cloud in a more cost-effective location or using a cloud hosting plan to establish a remote backup service, outsourcing elements of technological operations can have a dramatic positive impact on disaster recovery strategies. Furthermore, leasing resources managed at a third-party site is a far more cost-effective way of protecting against data loss and downtime, overcoming the budget issues that often plague the private sector.