If You Want to Protect Your Network, Reduce Your Single Point of Failures. Here’s Two Things You Can Do.
A Single Point of Failure (SPF), in an IT network, is the area(s) within your infrastructure (cloud or local) that if they failed you would lose access to your network. A clear example would be if your internet line went down would you lose your connection? If yes, that line would be considered a SPF.
Your RTO and RPO will set the single point of failure strategy. RTO and RPO, in plain language, stand for how long can your network be down for and how much data you can lose before your business function stops or is critically impacted. Two things you can do to reduce SPFs and their impact is to build redundancy and implement monitoring into your network.
An example of redundancy in your network would be putting in dual internet connections for the above scenario of one of them failing. If one were to fail the other could take over, with little to no interruption to your business. Having dual routers, switches, servers and dual network cards in the servers and workstations are all examples of building redundancy in a network. All this equipment can be calibrated so if one fails the other takes over. This may be overkill for some types of business but again knowing how much data (and what kind) combined with how long your network can be down will establish how much redundancy your networks need. Often times having dual power supply and dual switches can be enough but in other businesses every aspect of the network needs to have a redundancy. Working with your IT department or provider can help you understand how much you need.
Implementing monitoring will help you identify when something fails. Common monitoring tools will send notifications to an email inbox when something has gone down. Even if you have redundancy built in you still want to be monitoring so that you are aware of failures that have taken a redundant system back to a SPF. More robust programs have dashboards and a suite of tools that show you the health of the system remotely.
Redundancy and monitoring can help protect your network.