Time to quash the cloud myths

Gartner had it right when it said ‘cloud computing, by its very nature, is vulnerable to the risks of myths’. Even in 2016, a quick Google search highlights that enterprises are still unsure about the perceived risks that come hand in hand with cloud computing.

[easy-tweet tweet=”There is still a worrying amount of misinformation about #cloud” user=”bilco105 @steamhausMCR”]

Just a few of the top searches reveal a worrying lack of information surrounding the concept, with many still in the dark about ‘what is cloud computing’, ‘what is meant by cloud services’ and the ‘risks of using cloud computing’.

It’s time to get rid of the fluffy stuff and dispel some of the myths when it comes to cloud. We’ve put together three of our favourites here.

1. ‘‘I won’t know where my data’s being stored or if I’m being compliant’’

It’s great that people are starting to think about this – especially with changes to UK data protection rules coming in early this year as part of legislation being standardised across the EU. With data breaches potentially costing businesses as much as 4% of their annual turnover, it’s a great time to be questioning the ins and outs of your data security.

With data transfers within the EU and soon between the UK and US under ‘Safe Harbour’ to become more tightly controlled, it’s important to make sure that you’re asking the right questions. If your cloud provider is worth its salt, it’ll make sure you know exactly where your data is located and whether you’re staying within the law, wherever you’re operating.

[easy-tweet tweet=”Data breaches potentially cost businesses as much as 4% of their annual turnover” via=”bilco105″ hashtags=”data, security, infosec”]

2. ‘‘Sharing hardware and datacentre facilities with other customers is a risk to my data’’

This isn’t true if you pick the right partner. Using a platform such as Amazon’s AWS for example, means you can benefit from the company’s global expertise and rest assured that its technology is subject to the most rigorous tests and audits. The sheer size of the platform means Amazon can make significant investments in all elements of security.

What that means for businesses is that it’s often more secure than on-premise hardware and can provide better datacentre security isolation than having a dedicated infrastructure. And, for the ultra security conscious amongst us, you can also look to dedicated hardware with full isolation.

It’s not that sharing hardware and datacentre facilities is never a risk – but with platforms like AWS, it doesn’t have to be. Take public cloud, for example – users can access the data stored on their platforms. Numerous policies exist to ensure that this is strictly forbidden. Add in a number of ‘at-rest’ encryption offers for data, and you’ve got a platform that’s about as secure as it can be.

3. ‘‘Being in control of my own infrastructure will always make it more secure’’

Adam Selipsky, VP at AWS once said: “People think if they can control it they have more say in how things go. It’s like being in a car versus an aeroplane – you’re much safer in a plane.” The very same perception exists in managing cloud storage infrastructure.

being in full control doesn’t necessarily mean you’re safer from it disasters

This opinion is typically held by CIOs in enterprise organisations, whose responsibility for applications and software naturally prompts them to think that keeping in-house control over their cloud computing will put them in a better position to secure their data.

But in reality, relinquishing the management of that data and allowing a partner to store it for you means you’ll be embracing their huge level of expertise, ability to meet tough compliancy requirements and guaranteeing a higher level of availability and automation of services. And that’s all while retaining control of your data.

Upcoming changes in legislation, paired with a growing awareness of how cloud computing can tackle security concerns, is helping to redefine perceptions and debunk the cloud myths that are holding businesses back from embracing it.

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