No matter what problem you’re trying to solve in life, you need a path to get there. Solving your disaster recovery (DR) problem is no different, and it pays to keep your problem-solving at a high-level before diving too deep into the weeds.

In this blog, we cover five potential disaster recovery solutions for your business and what steps you need to take to ensure your DR problems are solved.

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Don’t Skip The Crucial First Step

Before signing any agreements or buying anything, the stakeholders in your business should answer these five questions. After 15+ years of experience in this field, we recommend you ask yourself these questions as the critical first step in solving your DR problems. Getting through them will save you a lot of money and months or even years of frustration down the road:

  1. Is there a compliance issue you must solve, and does the CEO view this as a must-have?
  2. What applications and data must be recovered to support your employees and customers?
  3. How long can you do without these applications and data? How much data can you afford to lose?
  4. What is the financial risk of your business being without these applications and data?
  5. Who needs to be involved in this process within my company and do we have the expertise to evaluate the options?

The bigger your business, the more complexities will factor into these questions, but you’ll thank yourself later for taking the time to answer them.

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5 Disaster Recovery Solutions for Your Business

Once you’ve nailed down your answers from the first step, you’ll be well-equipped to wade through the weeds of problem-solving. It’s time to consider these five potential DR solutions through the lens of your business’ unique needs:

1. Storage-based solutions are provided by the storage vendors and deployed as modules inside the storage array. This solution offers application consistency, but it functions at the storage layer and requires “like” hardware infrastructure in production and replication. A storage-based approach is a costly option regarding implementation and management.

2. Agent-based solutions install agents onto the host server that is desired to be backed up. It allows for application-level recovery but requires installing an agent on each server. It also means more overhead, less scalability, and increased complexity to manage.

3. Snapshot/backup-based solutions enable a quick restore by “freezing” a live storage system or VM at a moment in time. Because snapshots are typically taken every four hours, four hours of data is lost after rollback. This solution causes high latency and requires large amounts of storage. It does not perform well under high loads or at large scales, which leads to high recovery point objectives (RPOs).

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4. Native hypervisor replication solutions are hypervisor-aware but are managed on a per Virtual Machine (VM) or per Host basis. It does not have a central management interface, nor does it have consistency grouping. This makes it difficult to manage and maintain. Plus, it requires manual recovery operation.

5. Hypervisor-based replication solutions function so that each time the virtual machine writes to its virtual disks, the written command is automatically and continuously captured, cloned, and sent to the recovery site with no impact on application performance.

Hypervisor-based replication offers huge benefits without the drawbacks of other solutions and is optimized for virtual environments. It boasts application-level consistency grouping, easy scalability and granularity, recovery at the click of a button, continuous data protection, and more.

You can learn how LightBound’s Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS), a hypervisor-based solution, can provide superior protection for your business on our website.

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Ready to Learn More?

If you’re unsure which DR solution is best for your business, sign up today for a free one-hour consultation with LightBound’s experts to personally help you find the right solution for your business’ unique needs.

Click here for your Free Consultation

 

 

Years ago, the only traffic on corporate networks were business applications, threats, or email. But technology has come a long way since then, and a multitude of applications like Skype, Dropbox, and Slack have flooded the business world.

Increased application use has been helpful, even essential, for maximizing employee productivity and improving business practices, but these applications can carry viruses, malware, and other threats with them.

Traditional firewalls are unable to see or control all of these applications, meaning increased vulnerability to threats. Thankfully, the next-generation firewall (NGFW) was born, filling a much-needed gap in modern security needs.

 

Why Upgrade to NGFW from Traditional Firewall Security?

NGFW works better and faster than traditional firewalls to control the traffic that can enter and exit a network. While traditional firewalls are behind the times, next-generation firewalls provide increased control, improved security, and other essential features.

In this blog post, we’ll cover five main ways NGFW is superior to traditional firewalls and why, if you haven’t already, your business should upgrade to NGFW.

1. Single Device Functionality

If your current security provider is adding new devices to your firewall, that’s a red flag. It means unnecessary complexity and added cost for you. Plus, it increases the amount of oversight needed to keep your network secure while slowing down response time to threats.

NGFW integrates enterprise firewall capabilities, intrusion prevention system (IPS), and stateful packet inspection into one device. Traditionally, these would have been done on separate devices, but this integration allows for improved performance and accessibility.

  • Intrusion prevention system (IPS): detects and prevents vulnerability exploits by examining traffic flows
  • Stateful packet inspection (SPI): monitors the state of active connections to determine which packets to allow through a firewall

2. Better Security

Traditional firewalls block forbidden packets by protocol or port, while NGFW takes security even further by inspecting packets all the way down to the application layer. NGFW improves security in many ways, including:

  • Protection across the entire attack continuum: a growing number of application attacks are taking place on layers 4-7 of the OSI (Open Systems Interconnection) network stack, which next-generation firewalls are designed to help prevent.
  • Multilayered protection: to get multilayered protection traditionally, businesses would have to buy many different solutions from different vendors. Having an integrated solution means less complexity and smooth functionality so threats can be better spotted and stopped.
  • Advanced malware capabilities defend and safeguard against emerging and unknown threats
  • Faster response time from automated security
  • Limiting traffic to approved applications only, reducing risk

3. Simplified Management

NGFW reduces the number of manual tasks necessary with automated security features and integration, which also improves remediation speed. You can centrally manage security policies, service orchestration, monitoring, and reporting.

 

4. Improved Visibility and Control for Safe Application Enablement

Traditional firewalls have blind spots, but NGFW has superior visibility into all network traffic to detect and prioritize threats. With the multitude of applications out there today, NGFW’s application-level control, which allows you to see and control what applications are being used on your network, is key for today’s businesses.

Rather than having a policy asking employees not to use Facebook, you could not only have the option to block it completely, but you could set a policy nuanced enough to allow employees onto the site while blocking parts of it like Facebook Messenger or Candy Crush.

NGFW’s identity awareness integrates with application awareness to enable you to apply security policies more granularly using corporate directories. Now you can let your marketing team access social media sites while blocking employees that don’t need it, or only allowing partial access.

5. Lower Costs

Integration, security automation, and management simplification reduces complexity and the work necessary to respond to and remediate from security incidents. You save money and that’s a good thing.

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Implementing and Managing NGFW with LightBound

Upgrading your business security solution to the next-generation firewall is a smart move in response to today’s increasing security vulnerabilities. With the increased power, features, and functions that NGFW offers, it’s not easy to implement, so it’s more important than ever to ensure proper set-up and ongoing management.

There are many NGFW services on the market but look for a provider that’s experienced and is there for you before, during, and after implementation. LightBound has the expertise necessary to implement and manage next-generation firewalls across your network, and we’ll be there for you every step of the way. Contact LightBound today to get started, or learn more about our Choice Network.