Cloud worries? You’re not alone
By Stuart Janicki • 27 Aug 2013
To some, it may appear there is an invisible boundary for where cloud services begin, or a secret club where everyone knows about cloud computing and those on the outside are left wanting.
If you want to get in on the cloud but you’re not quite sure where to go, how to get there and if it is safe, then the good news is that you’re not alone.
UK businesses are intrigued by the cloud. The possibility of removing the cumbersome, labour intensive server room or unshackling users from the burden of a fixed desktop computer seems incredibly appealing.
We’ve changed the way we do business and the way we work. This has led to an increasing reliance on IT resources and we’re starting to discover these resources can be a bit, creaky, and become hard to scale.
But moving away from this can seem difficult. The word ‘cloud’ has been applied to a lot of services, associated to everything up-and-coming and hyped by so many companies that businesses can be left confused or uncertain. Businesses are unaware of the benefits that the cloud brings and how it brings growth and cost savings.
The cloud is an intangible entity. It has resulted in a difficult concept for people to understand and therefore know what skills they require to move to the cloud. More businesses would love to move services to the cloud, but are hindered by uncertainty of what the cloud fully is, what systems to use, how to adopt and integrate it into the business and consequently what they should be looking for.
Scarily though, once you move aside the smoke and mirrors, you’re probably using more cloud services than you realise.
This uncertainty is primarily driven by a lack of trust in cloud security. With some providers it can become impossible to know what country data resides in, let alone what server or disk it’s sitting on. This has left some businesses unwilling to leave data on third party infrastructure, especially with regulatory requirements such as the Data Protection Act fuelling the doubt. It is the role of the supplier to be transparent and provide appropriate documentation and certification about how they handle data.
It has become habit to trust the data that resides on local machines. It sits there in a physical location, ready and waiting to be used, even if it is often less secure than data in the cloud. It is easy to see why 78% of IT Managers1 feel that data security is the biggest barrier in adopting cloud computing.
But, as the number of reputable cloud service providers grows, and awareness of the benefits of cloud adoption increases, now is a great time to begin your move to the cloud.
This is the first in a series of entries about how to adopt the cloud securely that we will examine over the next few weeks.
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