Natural disasters can abruptly threaten our comfort, stability and even lives. Fortunately, their impact can be lessened with a solid and all-inclusive contingency plan—and not just for families, but businesses as well.

Latin American companies, for example, must be aware that Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Guatemala and El Salvador are among the countries most in risk of natural disasters. Also, given that many Latin American countries have an Atlantic and/or Pacific coast, they should also note that 2017 has seen more hurricanes of higher intensity than the average. This begs the question: When a natural disaster strikes, is your business’ contingency plan up to par?

Of course, the basics of your contingency plan will include communicating to employees and customers about the natural disaster and ensuring their safety and well-being, as well as protecting the infrastructure of your building. But is data being prioritized too? While it may not be the first task on the contingency plan, data is nevertheless crucial in maintaining business continuity, especially throughout and after the storm. Best of all, protecting data can be very simple and may require minimal involvement from the business side:

  • Ask your IT team to run risk assessment tests to ensure you are not vulnerable to data loss in the event of a natural disaster.
  • Ensure that computers and hard drives in your office are protected, as they almost certainly contain sensitive information.
  • Use your hosting provider to keep data safely away from the business’ location at all times. In the event that your computers are somehow compromised during a natural disaster, through managed hosting your company will already have backups of that data offsite.

    • For a more reliable provider, search for one that has multiple locations and that offers solutions for recovering data and preventing data loss.
    • Remember, while cloud hosting is an appealing solution for businesses, they may be vulnerable to hacker attacks. As such, consider private cloud hosting companies to better protect your business.

Undoubtedly, a business’ contingency plan should always put people’s safety first. After all: safety first, everything else second! Just keep in mind that data is a huge component of your company and while not as valuable as human life, it will make the post-disaster recovery much easier to cope with.