Chapter 12. Understanding the Role of Prevention

Throughout a disaster recovery planning project, and perpetually there-after, the DR planning team needs to continually watch for opportunities that can help prevent disasters or lessen their impact on the organization.

"An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure," the old saying goes. Although he was a prolific inventor, Benjamin Franklin couldn't have envisioned the Internet when he first penned that phrase. In disaster recovery planning, prevention is key—but it's often overlooked.

You have many places to look for prevention opportunities:

  • Facilities

  • Processes

  • Technology

  • Personnel

  • Security

  • Resilient architecture

The opportunities you find may not necessarily be huge, but smaller things often reduce risk in some way.

This chapter focuses on reducing risk where you find it to minimize the effects of disasters. In some cases, you can even prevent disasters. I'm talking about the man-made kind of disasters, of course—I don't want you to start thinking that I have a formula for preventing hurricanes, earthquakes, volcanoes, or floods. Perhaps a more accurate title for this chapter would be "Understanding the Role of Risk Reduction," but I still like the term prevention better because this chapter talks about preventing the effects of disasters.

Here are some disaster prevention rules of thumb:

  • You can't prevent natural disasters, but you can take measures to reduce their effects.

  • You can prevent some man-made disasters, and you can also take ...

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