Technology Support #5
5. (9) The institution maintains system backup for data availability.
Not Observed Insufficient Moderate Use Meets Criterion Completely
Most School servers are set to "continuous data protection", where data is backed up several times per day. A few are backed up once a day. Once per week, all backups are written to tape. Tapes are then stored at a secure offsite facility.
Data availability is also supported by a policy of implementing RAID redundancy on all School production systems. Operating system installations, applications, databases, and user data are protected through the use of various RAID protocols.
User data maintained by service providers (such as PeopleSoft, Canvas, and Blackboard Collaborate) is protected by industry-standard data center practices for high availability, including data backup, data redundancy, and service failover.
A structured technology budget is maintained. The technology budget supports the implementation and maintenance of a robust technology infrastructure for online education. The technology budget allows the acquisition and deployment of the server, storage, and tape equipment which is used for data backups. The technology budget also supports the acquisition and renewal of hosting and maintenance contracts with application service providers (such as Canvas and Blackboard Collaborate), which include provisions for data backup and retention.
For in-house systems, data backups are written to tape and retained for 5 years in compliance with University data retention policies. Tape backups are stored offsite at a secure, hardened facility.
A second-level offsite data storage protocol, where separate backups are stored at a geographically distant facility is also in place. In the event of a catastrophic geological event in the San Francisco Bay Area, the second-level protocol will ensure continuation of user data.
Backup viability has been verified and several major data recoveries have occurred successfully where data was recovered from backup and placed back into production.