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Redefining Disaster Recovery: New Technologies Provide Disaster Planning Challenges and Solutions

In addition to covering physical data centers, branches, and ATMs, banks' disaster recovery and business continuity plans now have to cover digital and virtual presences as well. New technologies such as social networking, mobile and the cloud can help.
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Social Networking, Mobile and Cloud Can Enhance BCP

By Daiji Morita, Senior Consultant, NRI Financial Solutions (Tokyo)

In Japan, the Financial Services Authority demands that banks have robust business continuity plans (BCPs), especially around the settlement process, which could impact users greatly. Regulators are demanding that companies evaluate their BCPs in order to ensure firms are able to respond to longer-term disaster situations, as well as take into consideration a possibility of broader damage and how best to deal with this.

As recently as last year, financial institutions relied on government office scenarios. However, after the earthquake and tsunami disaster, each company reviewed its own risk environment and made an effort to better secure its individual business continuity plan. Still, there is a clear need for street-wide training, including all internal and external organizations associated with operations.

Following last year's tsunami disaster, Japan learned the limit of a scenario-based approach to BCP and found that there is a need to transition to an emergency-level approach. As firms began shifting to this strategy, they started to assign back-up decision makers who could react and generate flexible solutions on the fly. For instance, if something unexpected happens, a predetermined network of decision makers can address each situation case by case.

There is no single key solution that solves all challenges, but utilizing social networking services, mobile and cloud technology could enhance your BCP and minimize the impact disasters may have on your business. More frequently, we see firms increasingly utilize BPO services both in Japan and globally as a preventative measure. The demand for this type of service is not surprising, given the timing of the catastrophes over the past decade.


Peggy Bresnick Kendler has been a writer for 30 years. She has worked as an editor, publicist and school district technology coordinator. During the past decade, Bresnick Kendler has worked for UBM TechWeb on special financialservices technology-centered ... View Full Bio

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