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Hurricane Preparedness Checklist for Businesses: Safeguard Your IT Infrastructure

Posted: Jul 2024

Hurricane season is upon us, bringing the threat of powerful storms that can disrupt daily life and cause significant damage. While securing your physical location is crucial, ensuring the safety and functionality of your IT infrastructure is equally important. This Hurricane Preparedness Checklist for businesses will guide you through essential steps to prepare your IT systems.

Street, water and floods from storm or rain in winter weather with damage and car in Texas. Climate change, environment and hurricane with natural disaster, emergency and crisis for community.

Before the Storm:

  1. Backup Your Data – Top Priority: This is the single most critical step. Regularly back up all essential data to a secure offsite location, preferably the cloud. Consider cloud-based backup solutions that offer automatic and continuous backup options.

  2. Inventory and Secure Equipment: Create a detailed inventory of all your IT equipment, including servers, workstations, and network devices. Securely elevate equipment off the ground and away from windows to minimize damage from flooding or windblown debris.

  3. Test Your Disaster Recovery Plan (DRP): Don’t wait until disaster strikes! Test your DRP to identify any weaknesses and ensure everyone on your team knows their roles and responsibilities in a recovery situation.

  4. Protect Against Power Outages: Invest in robust surge protectors for your IT equipment to safeguard against electrical damage, a common occurrence during hurricanes.

  5. Charge Critical Devices: Ensure laptops, tablets, and mobile phones are fully charged before the storm hits. Consider having external batteries on hand for extended power outages.

  6. Communicate and Educate Employees: Inform your team about the IT preparedness plan and their responsibilities in case of a storm. This could involve shutting down equipment properly or accessing critical data remotely.

During the Storm:

  1. Power Down When Necessary: If flooding or high winds threaten your physical location, prioritize safety and shut down all IT equipment to prevent damage.

  2. Maintain Communication (if possible): While prioritizing safety, try to maintain communication with your team if possible. Utilize cloud-based tools for collaboration and document sharing to keep operations running remotely.
Flooding in Texas League city after hurricane.

After the Storm:

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) said 40% of small businesses that close in the wake of a disaster never reopen, and an additional 29% go out of business within two years of a disaster. Here’s the “After The Storm” section of the Hurricane Preparedness Checklist so you can get your business back on track.

  1. Assess the Damage: Once it’s safe to do so, assess the damage to your IT infrastructure. Prioritize restoring critical systems needed for immediate operations.

  2. Restore from Backups: If you experienced data loss, restore your systems from your offsite backups. This is why having a tested and reliable backup solution is crucial.

  3. Document Everything: Document any damage sustained to your IT infrastructure and lost data. This documentation may be helpful for insurance purposes.
Team Of Workers At Table Working And Brainstorming

Proactive Measures:

  1. Consider Cloud-Based Solutions: Cloud-based computing offers significant advantages during natural disasters. Cloud infrastructure can be accessed remotely, minimizing downtime even if your physical location is affected.

  2. Invest in Business Continuity Planning (BCP): A comprehensive business continuity plan (BCP) goes beyond IT infrastructure. It outlines strategies to keep your business operational during disruptions.

By following this Hurricane Preparedness Checklist, you can significantly increase your IT infrastructure’s resilience in the face of hurricanes and other natural disasters. Remember, preparation is key to minimizing downtime and ensuring a smooth recovery.

Need professional support? Contact our team of experts-on-demand. Bridgehead our 24/7 technology operations mean your business gets certified top-tier support when you need it most.

Resources for Texas businesses to stay informed:

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