March 1, 2015
Perhaps it’s a case of unrealistic expectations or simple lack of preparation, but companies that adopt cloud computing are finding that using it is a greater challenge than anticipated. That’s not to take away from the many benefits that the cloud can provide, such as greater enterprise agility and cost savings, but there’s always a chance the cloud can lead to more organizational struggles if not handled correctly. Research from Information Management shows just how widespread the problem is. In that recent study, a shocking 88 percent of organizations that adopted cloud computing ran into at the very least one challenge they hadn’t expected. The challenges and struggles are as varied as the cloud providers themselves, so finding an easy one-size-fits-all solution shouldn’t be the goal. But the solutions are out there. If your company finds itself struggling with your newly adopted cloud, the answers may not be too far away.
Cloud Security Problems
With so much focus placed on recent security breaches involving major corporations over the past few years, it’s no wonder cloud security is such a priority. Cyber criminal tactics continue to evolve, making the task of enhancing cloud security that much more difficult. IT departments in particular are struggling to keep up with the demands surrounding cloud security. A recent survey from the Ponemon Institute and SafeNet shows that 70 percent of IT workers say privacy and data protection in the cloud remains a challenge.
Your company may respond to these problems by limiting use of the cloud, but that may limit the benefits that can be gained from it. A better solution is to closely monitor your software, upgrading and patching it at the first opportunity. Traditional security techniques are often insufficient for dealing with modern security threats. Using your resources to update your security technology in response to changing risks is the best strategy.
Consolidating Cloud Services
There are many ways to adopt cloud computing. Your company may be attracted to Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), or Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), among many others. The struggles come when trying to combine different services they’re employing into one efficient operation. You may use Amazon Web Service’s IaaS while also utilizing Salesforce’s SaaS, but getting them to run together may prove difficult. You’re not alone in this regard. A study from Forrester shows that 83 percent of enterprise cloud users have trouble consolidating the multiple cloud services they have. Using public and private clouds in conjunction with each other is another challenge that’s difficult to overcome.
When it comes to working with so many different services, or even simply finding what services would work best for you, going with a cloud management solution may be the best bet. Many companies offer their management services to help businesses get the most out of the cloud with minimal hassle. Solutions like Dell cloud computing can offer portfolios of services and management tools to deal with the most common problems you might face with the cloud. These management services also help to secure and control data while building up a company’s private cloud.
Data Privacy Compliance
Similar to cloud security, managing data privacy in the cloud is a point of emphasis for many organizations. When using multiple cloud services, however, obstacles may arise depending on where those clouds are physically located. Laws and regulations regarding data privacy can change depending on what country or state you’re located in, which can in turn reduce the effectiveness of using cloud computing. The more locations are involved in the equation, the more complex the problem can become, which can lead to lawsuits and other damages should a security breach occur.
Gaining a clear understanding of data protection laws is a necessary step all business have to take when moving to the cloud. Generally speaking, data encryption is the safest way to satisfy most regulations out there, so your company should definitely look into a cloud encryption solution when using a cloud service. Split-key encryption also keeps the data firmly in your control, no matter what cloud provider you end up choosing.
Cloud computing is still a maturing industry, which means growing pains are a near certainty. Many companies struggle to find the best ways to utilize the cloud, and even when successful, it’s usually not without some hurdles along the way. The above examples are some of the most common problems you’ll likely encounter along the journey to fully embracing the cloud. With the right solutions in mind, you’ll be more prepared to take full advantage of the cloud’s benefits while avoiding some of the more serious pitfalls.
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