Personal Small Business Enterprise

Cloud Busting: Addressing Top Cloud Myths

There are always a few holdouts who take a bit longer to embrace new technology. I know this personally because my parents didn’t buy a microwave until the 1990s. I also know there are still some doubters out there when it comes to cloud-based services. Why? I suspect it’s due to a few myths about the cloud that just keep popping up.

Let’s take a look at some of those myths, along with the cold hard facts that disprove them:

Myth #1: The cloud isn’t secure
Fact: “Cloud and hosted environments are not inherently less secure than enterprise data centres.” That’s the conclusion of a March 2013 study by IT security firm Alert Logic that analyzed 45,000 threat incidents among 1,800 of its customers. And in a June 2013 survey by Microsoft, 94 per cent of small and medium sized businesses who have adopted cloud said their solution gives them additional security-related capabilities like spam email management.

Myth #2: The cloud is unreliable
Fact: According to a June 2013 report by the International Working Group on Cloud Computing Resiliency, all 13 major cloud services it studied have averaged uptime of 99.9 per cent since 2007. In addition, 75 per cent of small and medium sized businesses in the aforementioned Microsoft survey reported their service availability has improved since switching to cloud.

Myth #3: The cloud isn’t flexible
Fact: For starters, cloud-based services are offered via multiple delivery models including public, private and hybrid clouds. Cloud-based services are also available through different types of cloud models, including software-as-a-service, infrastructure-as-a-service and platform-as-a-service. In many cases, you have the flexibility to use just one or a combination of these delivery models and types of cloud. The flexibility theme continues with billing models as well, with some vendors offering one-year contracts, while others offer monthly subscriptions.

Myth #4: The cloud is a privacy risk
Fact: Nothing is 100 per cent risk-free. But you can reduce risk substantially by taking steps to safeguard the privacy of your cloud-based data. Check a cloud service provider’s policies to find out:

–      If your data will be encrypted

–      What happens to your data after your contract ends

–      How you’ll be notified of service or policy changes

–      Who owns or retains the right to distribute your data

–      Whether your data will be stored in Canada or in another country

–      If your data could be accessed by third parties like advertisers or foreign governments

The bottom line
Cloud computing is still evolving, and new data on its security and reliability comes out all the time. Be sure to consider some of the data above if you’re still sitting on the sidelines. Your business could be missing out on some big productivity gains and cost savings in the meantime.

Are you still holding out on adopting cloud? If so, why? Or, if you have adopted cloud services, what has your experience been like? Have your say in our comments area below.

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