5 potential business continuity risks

5 potential business continuity risks

Nov 11, 2014


Many organizations rely on a number of core business processes that, if disrupted, could cause significant problems.

One of the best ways to prepare for disasters is to consider as many worst-case scenarios as possible and formulate a plan for overcoming each obstacle if it were to occur.

With that in mind, here are five potential dangers that could bring your enterprise to a grinding halt. How would you deal with each event if it happened?

1. Database failure

There are numerous reasons why databases become unavailable, all of which have an adverse effect on important IT systems.

Without a functioning database, customers may not be able to purchase items online, and staff could be left unable to perform their duties. The situation is also likely to cause setbacks with suppliers and partners.

2. Power outage

Less common in developed countries than in emerging economies, power outages can nonetheless happen anywhere in the world.

Businesses without backup electricity will lose the use of IT systems, lights and a range of important appliances.

3. Natural disasters

Floods, storms, bushfires and other weather-related incidents can have a devastating impact on your business.

Not only can they lead to power outages (see above), they could cause significant damage to the office building, making it inaccessible to staff. The destruction of important IT infrastructure and databases is also a possibility. 

4. Malicious online attacks

Cybercriminals are becoming increasingly sophisticated, bringing down the websites of even the world's biggest organizations.

Distributed denial-of-service attacks are particularly popular, making machines and network resources unavailable to employees, customers and other stakeholders.

5. Staff sickness

Media coverage of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa has been widespread in recent months, and although the disease is unlikely to gain a foothold outside of the region, other less deadly illnesses can still impact businesses.

Whether it's due to flu or a stomach bug, large-scale absenteeism poses a very real threat to many companies.

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