With more and more companies looking at how they can benefit from cloud computing, many are weary about moving to “the cloud”.
“Like most emerging technologies I think cloud computing has some way to go from a non-technical perspective,” commented Kareem Tawansi, CEO of software development provider, Solentive Software.
“Just like the use of social media, such as Facebook and Twitter, which are constantly evolving and maturing, the same I believe will apply to cloud computing for some time.
“The fundamental question I keep on asking myself, as an owner of a technology company who is responsible for the security of a large amount of data, is how can I control something I don’t have complete control over? As any business owner would know, control over your organisation is an essential part of successfully running a business,” stated Kareem.
“If I were to move an essential service to a cloud platform I would keep up-to-date replicas onsite,” explained Kareem. “Some may argue this is a contour intuitive but I’d say it’s a hedge.
“From a replication perspective I’d focus on the data and not on processing power,” concluded Kareem.
By adopting Kareem’s approach:
- There will always be at least one copy of the data on your premises for regulation purposes
- To ensure security is up-to-date, you can always patch your own local virtual servers and if there are synchronisation issues you would know “the cloud” servers are not up-to-date
- Your data is already backed up locally if your provider goes broke
The key points Kareem suggests you consider when evaluating cloud providers include:
- Where are the data centre(s) located?
- What jurisdiction does the provider fall under?
- What regulatory bodies have access to your data?
- What internal security policies does the provider run and who within the provider’s business has access to your data?
- What backup and restore mechanisms are in place?
- Where are the backups located?
- Who has access to the backups?
- The usual financial/commercial questions about a 3rd party one intends to do business with