Act of Sabotage:
An act of sabotage is the deliberate serious disruption of an organization’s activities with an
attempt to discredit or financially damage the organization. Business
will often be immediately and seriously affected by successful acts of
sabotage. This can affect the normal operations and also serve to
de-stabilize the workforce. An internal attack on the IT systems
through the use of malicious code can be considered to be an act of
Act of terrorism:
Acts of terrorism include explosions, bomb threats, hostage taking, sabotage and organized
violence. Whether this is perpetrated through a recognized terrorist
organization or a violent protest group, the effect on individuals and
business is the same. Such acts create uncertainty and fear and serve
to destabilize the general environment.
Act of War:
An act of war is the commencement of hostilities between one country and another. This could
take the form of air strikes, ground strikes, invasion or blockades.
Business could be immediately affected where they are either located
near the outbreak of hostilities or where they are dependent upon
imports or exports for survival. Many businesses do not survive a
prolonged outbreak of war.
Air conditioning failure:
An air conditioning (AC) failure could have serious consequences where the AC
unit is protecting particularly sensitive equipment such as a main
computer processing unit, and the rise in temperature could cause the
equipment to fail and be damaged. It can also affect the workforce as
conditions in buildings can become extremely uncomfortable with a
significant rise in temperatures and where the staff is adversely
affected. Portable AC equipment may possibly be used as back up.
A formal notification that an incident has occurred which may develop into a disaster.
Alternate Site: A location where critical
business functions can resume processing in the event of an interruption
Arson is the deliberate setting of a fire to damage the organizations premises and contents. As this can
cause both loss of premises and loss of goods and other assets, this can
be highly disruptive to the organization.
Any damage, failure or
other condition, which causes denial of access to the building or the
working area within the building, e.g. fire, flood, contamination, loss
of services, air conditioning failure, forensics.
Business Continuity Plan:
A collection of
procedures and information that is developed and maintained in readiness
for use in the event of an emergency or disaster.
Business Continuity Planning (BCP):
Preparations made to keep a business running during and after a
disaster, ensuring the availability of those resources required to
maintain the ongoing viability of the organization.
Business Continuity Team Leader:
A member of the recovery management team who is assigned the overall responsibility
for coordination of the recovery planning program ensuring team member
training, testing and maintenance of recovery plans.
Business impact analysis (BIA):
A management level analysis, which identifies the impacts of losing company
resources. The BIA measures the effect of resources loss and escalating
losses over time in order to provide senior management with reliable
data upon which to base decisions on risk mitigation and continuity
Business Impact Assessment (BIA):
Ask the following questions: How bad can things get? What are the most
important resources, systems, outputs, and dependencies by business
function? What impact does unavailability have?
Business Recovery Coordinator:
Activates Business Continuity Plan, Disaster Recovery Plans and/or Emergency
Preparedness Plans and works with administration, advisory committees,
and Recovery Teams to allocate resources and coordinate implementation
of the Recovery Plans. Serves as the primary contact and coordinates
the recovery effort. Insures that status of the recovery effort is
communicated to the appropriate levels of the organization. Insures
that a post mortem review is conducted and that upgrades are
incorporated into the plan as appropriate.
One or more data centers or
office space facilities equipped with sufficient pre-qualified
environmental conditioning, electrical connectivity, communications
access, configurable space and access to accommodate the installation
and operation of equipment by critical staff required to resume business
This is the location set up
for management and BCP to operate from during emergency situations. The
continuity plan document and other needed resources should be maintained
Communications services breakdown:
Most businesses are fully dependent upon their telecommunications services to
operate their normal business processes and to enable their networks to
function. A disruption to the telecommunications services can result in
a business losing revenue and customers. The use of cell-based
telephones can help to alleviate this but the main reliance is likely to
be on the land based lines.
Contamination and Environmental Hazards:
Contamination and environmental hazards include polluted air, polluted
water, chemicals, radiation, asbestos, smoke, dampness and mildew, toxic
waste and oil pollution. Many of these conditions can disrupt business
processes directly and, in addition, cause sickness among employees.
This can result in prosecution or litigation if more permanent damage to
employees’ health occurs.
UTMB would be able to
exercise restraint and direct influence over the event, remaining in
relative control of business.
Crisis: An abnormal situation, or
perception, which threatens the operations, staff, customers or
reputation of an enterprise.
UTMB would find that quality,
service, and/or property could suffer, causing a change or disruption in
business resulting in a moderate state of crisis or emergency.
Critical Business Functions:
Those functions considered essential to the ongoing operation of the
organization or business unit. Critical functions also include anything
that might adversely impact service delivery or significantly impair the
administrative or financial integrity of the organization.
Cyber crime is a major area of
information security risk. It includes attacks by hackers, denial of
service attacks, virus attacks, hoax virus warnings and premeditated
internal attacks. All cyber crime attacks can have an immediate and
devastating affect on the organization’s normal business process. The
average cost of an information security incident has been estimated at
$30,000 and over 60% of organizations are reported to experience one or
more incidents every year.
UTMB services would be significantly degraded, but would be able to conduct business.
Disaster Recovery Planning (DRP):
Typically, the technology aspects of a business continuity plan, to recover
information system resources to full or partial production processing
levels in the event of an extended outage. Normally, information system
resources will be restored according to a priority indicated by what is
“mission critical” to the organization.
Disclosure of sensitive information:
This is a serious information security incident, which can result in severe
embarrassment, financial loss, and even litigation where damage has been
caused to someone’s reputation or financial standing. Further types of
serious disclosure involve secret patent information, plans and
strategic directions, research, information disclosed to legal
representatives etc. Deliberate unauthorized disclosure of sensitive
information is also referred to as espionage.
The impact of lightning
strikes can be significant. It can cause disruption to power and can
also cause fires. It may also damage electrical equipment including
computer systems. Structural damage is also possible through falling
trees or other objects.
Electrical power failure:
All organizations depend on electrical power to continue normal operations. Without power
the organization’s computers, lights, telephones and other communication
medium will not be operational and the impact on normal business
operation can be devastating. All organizations should be prepared for
a possible electrical power failure, as the impact can be so severe.
Data can be lost, customers can be lost and there can be a serious
impact on revenue. Pre-planning is essential as a regional outage can
cause a shortage of backup electrical generators.
An epidemic can occur when a contagious illness affects a large number of persons within a country or
region. This can have a particularly devastating short term impact on
business through a large number of persons being absent from work at the
same time. Certain illnesses can have a longer-term effect on the
business where long term illness or death results.
Equipment Failure (excluding IT hardware):
All businesses rely on a whole range of different types of equipment in
order to run their business processes. In many cases, it is possible to
move to alternative processes to enable the businesses process to
continue but has required considerable planning and preparation.
Fires are often devastating and can
be started through a wide range of events, which may be accidental or
environmental. The impact on the business will vary depending on the
severity of the fire and the time within which it can be brought under
control. A fire can cause human injury or death and damage can also be
caused to records and equipment and the fabric or structure of
Floods result from thunderstorms,
tropical storms, or heavy and prolonged rainfall-causing rivers to
overflow their banks and flood the surrounding areas. Floods can
seriously affect buildings and equipment causing power failures and loss
of facilities and can even result in injury or death.
Freezing conditions can occur in winter periods and the effects can be devastating. Where
temperatures fall to freezing, they can create
conditions, which significantly disrupt businesses and even cause death
or injury. Businesses and homes can be seriously affected through burst
pipes, inadequate heating facilities, disruption to transportation and
malfunctioning equipment. Work undertaken outside of buildings in the
open environment will obviously be seriously affected.
A data center facility or office
facility with sufficient hardware, communications interfaces and
environmentally controlled space capable of providing relatively
immediate backup data processing support.
Hurricanes are storms with heavy
circular winds exceeding 70 miles per hour. The hurricane contains both
extremely strong winds and torrential rain. Hurricanes can cause
flooding, massive structural damage to homes and business premises with
associated power failures, and even injury and death.
Impact is the cost to the enterprise, which may or may not be measured in purely financial terms.
Any event, which may be, or may lead to, a disaster.
The securing or safeguarding of all sensitive information, electronic or otherwise,
which is owned by an organization.
Other rooms within the organization could be equipped to support business functions (i.e.,
training rooms, cafeterias, conference rooms, etc)
Internal power failure:
An internal power failure is an interruption to the electrical power services caused
through internal equipment or cabling failure. This type of fault will
need to be repaired by a qualified electrician and delays will
inevitably impact the business process. Where particularly serious
faults have occurred, such as damage to main cables, the repairs could
take some time and could have a severe effect on the business.
UTMB would be able to exercise
restraint and direct influence over the event, remaining in relative
control of business.
Loss of drainage / waste removal:
The loss of drainage or waste removal is likely to cause a serious sanitation and
health issue for most businesses. This is likely to impact the
business through the possible loss of its workforce during the period
where drainage services are not available. This, in turn, will have an
immediate impact on revenue.
Loss of gas supply:
The loss of gas supply
can be extremely serious where the business relies on gas to fuel either
its production processes or provide heating within its premises. The
impact that a loss of gas supply can have on the production process can
result in the whole process shutting down. The impact on the
organization will also be particularly acute where the loss of gas-fired
heating could render the premises unusable during periods of low
Loss of records or data:
The loss of
records or data can be particularly disruptive where poor backup and
recovery procedures result in the need to re-input and re-compile the
records. This is normally a slow process and is particularly labor
intensive. This can result in an increase in costs through additional
working hours and a great deal of embarrassment where information is
unexpectedly not available.
Loss of water supply:
The loss of the water
supply is likely to close down a business premises until the supply is
restored. Where the water is used in the production process this is
particularly serious. The loss of water supply is also a health and
safety issue as minimum sanitary needs cannot be met. This is often
caused through a fault in a water supply route or as a result of a
particularly severe drought.
Since Galveston is an
island and has limited accessibility, access to the island by employees,
supplies and customers will need to be evaluated and assessed.
IT system failure:
With the almost total level of dependence on IT systems within the vast majority of
businesses, a failure to these systems can be particularly devastating.
The types of threats to computer systems are many and varied, including
hardware failure, damage to cables, water leaks and fires, air
conditioning system failures, network failures, application system
failures, telecommunications equipment failures etc.
A neighborhood hazard
is defined as a disruptive event in the close vicinity, which directly
or indirectly affects your own premises and employees. An example would
be seepage of hazardous waste or the escape of toxic gases from a local
chemical plant. Health and safety regulations require that the
organization take suitable action to protect its employees. This may
have severe disruptive implications for the business particularly where
it can take some time to clear the hazard.
A storage facility at a
safe distance from the primary facility, which is used for housing
recovery, supplies, equipment, vital records etc.
An impact, which is not
quantifiable in financial terms but its effects, may be among the most
severe in determining the survival of an organization following a
The interruption of automated
processing systems, support services or essential business operations
that may result in the organization’s inability to provide service for
some period of time.
Petroleum and oil shortage:
For most countries in the world, a petroleum shortage can occur at any time.
This has a serious impact on businesses as rationing is likely to be
imposed immediately affecting transportation and the normal operations
of diesel or gasoline fuelled machinery.
An agreement in which two parties agree to allow the other to use their site, resources
or facilities during a disaster.
Recovery Point Objective (RPO):
This is defined by the data content owner of an IT application.
It is the acceptable level of data loss expressed in time, usually since the last backup.
Recovery Time Objective (RTO):
This is defined by the data content owner for an IT application. It is the time
from disaster declaration to the restoration of the application.
The process of planning for
and/or implementing the recovery of critical business operations
immediately following an interruption or disaster.
Risk Assessment & Management:
The identification and evaluation of operational risks that particularly
affect the enterprise’s ability to function and addressing the
Risk Reduction or Mitigation:
The implementation of the preventive measures, which risk assessment, has
A pre-defined set of events and
conditions, which describe an interruption, disruption or disaster
related to some aspect (s) of an organization’s business for purposes of
exercising a recovery plan (s).
An organization or business
function can transfer work to another of it’s own locations.
Service Level Agreement (SLA):
between a service provider and service user as to the nature, quality,
availability and scope of the service to be provided.
Site access denial:
Any disturbance or
activity within the area surrounding the site which renders the site
unavailable, e.g. fire, flood, riot, strike, loss of services,
forensics. The site itself may be undamaged.
The procedures for
rebuilding a computer system to the condition where it is ready to
accept data and applications. System recovery depends on having access
to suitable hardware.
UTMB would be unable to achieve
its core purpose and unable to conduct its mission
This hazard could range from the
theft of goods or equipment to the theft of money or other valuables.
In addition to possible financially damaging the organization, they can
cause suspicion and uncertainty with the workforce where it may be
believed that one or more of them could have been involved.
Tornadoes are tight columns of
circling air creating a funnel shape. The wind forces within the
tornado can reach over 200 miles per hour. Tornadoes can often travel
in excess of 50 miles per hour. They can cause significant structural
damage and can also cause severe injuries and death.
All data and information
required to support business functions (i.e., historical, regulatory
requirements including, but not limited to, policy and procedures
manuals, input documents or data, manuals for software and other
applications, vendor/customer lists with phone numbers, and backup tape
files.) Additionally, these records should be maintained off-site at a
third party vendor or command center.
A data center or office facility
which is partially equipped with hardware, communications interfaces,
electricity and environmental conditioning capable of providing backup
Acts of violence in the workplace can
affect moral, absenteeism, create fear and uncertainty and increase the
rate of turnover of employees. This can have a significant affect on
productivity and could also result in claims for workers compensation,
harassment claims and a need for increased security measures.
Statistically, this type of incident is especially prevalent at
organizations which have recently merged or are being re-sized or
restructured, where there are regular threats of industrial action, or
where permanent employees have been replaced with temporary employees.