fbpx

Business Continuity in a Nutshell: Unplanned Network Downtime (And How to Prevent It)

Reading Time: 3 minutes According to a report by IT giant Datto, network outages account for 50% of all downtime events in business. The primary consequence is a hit to business continuity and employee productivity, which ultimately equals impact to your bottom-line. In this post, we’ll look at what unplanned network downtime is, why it happens, and what small to medium-sized businesses in South Africa can do to prevent it. What is Unplanned Network Downtime? Unplanned network downtime describes when your business network is down unexpectedly. It includes scenarios where network connections are extremely slow or intermittent, and thus practically unusable. There are a variety of causes of unplanned network downtime, such as hardware failure, natural disasters, and cybersecurity attacks. In contrast, planned network downtime is planned, i.e., for hardware maintenance or updates. The main difference between the two is that unplanned downtime is unpredictable and with greater impact to business continuity, while planned downtime is scheduled and business disruption is typically far less. Common Causes of Unplanned Network Downtime: Human error Cybersecurity attacks Hardware and/or software failure Power outages / loadshedding Natural disasters (flood / fire) Internet outages (stolen copper cables / damaged fibre) Actionable Ways to Prevent and Mitigate Network Downtime Events […]
business continuity in a nutshell unplanned network downtime (and how to prevent it)
24 Jul, 2022
Reading Time: 3 minutes

According to a report by IT giant Datto, network outages account for 50% of all downtime events in business. The primary consequence is a hit to business continuity and employee productivity, which ultimately equals impact to your bottom-line.

In this post, we’ll look at what unplanned network downtime is, why it happens, and what small to medium-sized businesses in South Africa can do to prevent it.

What is Unplanned Network Downtime?

Unplanned network downtime describes when your business network is down unexpectedly. It includes scenarios where network connections are extremely slow or intermittent, and thus practically unusable.

There are a variety of causes of unplanned network downtime, such as hardware failure, natural disasters, and cybersecurity attacks.

In contrast, planned network downtime is planned, i.e., for hardware maintenance or updates. The main difference between the two is that unplanned downtime is unpredictable and with greater impact to business continuity, while planned downtime is scheduled and business disruption is typically far less.

Common Causes of Unplanned Network Downtime:

Actionable Ways to Prevent and Mitigate Network Downtime Events

Have a Known and Actionable ‘Plan B’

The first step is to have a backup plan in place. This way, if your primary network goes down, you can switch to your backup and keep business running as usual. There are a few different ways to do this, such as having a redundant network or using cloud-based solutions.

Backup At Least Daily

As above, backing up servers on a regular basis is crucial for quickly restoring networks in the event of an outage.

But a backup is not worth much if its months, weeks, or even days old. Make sure to back up at least once daily, test your backups regularly to ensure that they are working, and have at least one backup stored physically off-premises or in the cloud.

Related:

the top 4 benefits of image based backups

The Top 4 Benefits of Image-Based Backups

Invest in 24/7 Network Monitoring

One of the best ways to prevent unplanned network downtime is to have a 24/7 network monitoring solution in place. This will give you visibility into your network so that you can detect and fix problems even before they cause an outage.

Run Network Tests

Keeping your servers and networking hardware up to date with the latest security patches and software updates is important for preventing outages. It’s also a good idea to run regular tests to make sure that your networks are configured correctly and can handle heavy traffic.

Keep Server Software and Hardware Up to Date

One of the main causes of unplanned network downtime is outdated software and hardware. By keeping your systems up to date, you can minimize the risk of outages caused by these factors. As we have covered previously, server upgrades are typically required about every three years at the least.

Invest in Backup Power Supply

Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem that loadshedding is going anywhere soon in South Africa. Mitigate the risk of outages caused by load shedding and power outages by investing in backup power supplies, such as a generator, inverter or UPS system. This way, you can keep your network running even when the power is out.

Make Network Cybersecurity A Priority

Last but not least, it’s important to have a strong network security strategy in place. This will help to prevent outages caused by cybersecurity threats, such as ransomware and DDOS attacks. Some basic steps include firewalls, VPNs, MFA, encrypting data, and restricting access to sensitive systems.

Related:

4 Reasons Why Your Small Business Needs A Vpn

4 Reasons Why Your Small Business Needs a VPN

Ready to Reduce Network Downtime in Your Business?

Unplanned network downtime can be costly for businesses, but there are things you can do to prevent it. To discover how we can assist, contact iSite Computers, a Managed IT Services Provider, for a free, no-obligation consult.

Call Isite Computers

Join Our Newsletter

Related Posts

Comments

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *