Cloud Computing Risks (And How to Deal With Them)

Cloud Computing Risks (And How to Deal With Them)

“Fear of failure must never be a reason not to try something.”

– Frederick Smith, founder, chairman, president, and CEO of FedEx.

There is absolutely no doubt that cloud computing is beneficial to companies looking to revolutionize their IT infrastructures. However, there is no denying that certain concerns do remain. While we do advocate what Mr. Smith says in the quote above, of not refusing to embrace new technology for fear of setbacks, it’s always better to recognize beforehand some risks with cloud computing and how to deal with them.

Here, we list some of the issues that, if unattended, have the potential to deteriorate into risks. Often, the solution involves clarifying issues when selecting the cloud computing service providers. However, we must stress that most providers do address these issues, thereby making cloud computing relatively safe.

However, like all emerging technologies, there is always scope for improvement.

  • Security – This is “the” major bugbear, the main reason holding back universal adoption of cloud computing. Being based on the Internet does make cloud computing susceptible to cyber attacks. But then again, all modern IT systems are connected, one way or the other, to the Internet. By that logic, all systems are vulnerable. In fact, the distributed nature of cloud computing makes it easier to recover from attacks, both of the cyber and the physical kind. At the same time, a thorough examination of the service provider’s security policies is necessary before deciding to sign on the dotted line.  We have earlier addressed this issue in Is Cloud Computing Secure? Yes, Another Perspective.
  • Compatibility – The fact that cloud computing networks may not be compatible with existing IT infrastructures is a fear that gives Chief Information Officers (CIOs) across the globe sleepless nights, tying their hands from embracing the new technology in spite of its multiple advantages on the cost and efficiency fronts. Moreover, the very presence of existing systems and the feeling that they may have to be replaced if cloud computing is adopted also holds them back. With hybrid clouds, some of these concerns may be addressed, as discussed in Having The Best Of Both Worlds With Hybrid Clouds.”
  • Availability – When a company has its data in the cloud, it is not in its proximity. Consequently, its availability at critical junctures is potentially a matter of concern. Hence, before signing a contract with a service provider, it is important to clarify how the provider can guarantee data and service availability during bandwidth interruptions and DDOS (Distributed Denial Of Service) attacks.
  • Compliance – Cloud computing may be based off the “cloud” of the Internet, but the actual data resides on multiple servers in multiple locations, often in multiple countries. While this has a distinct advantage as regards availability when any particular center is rendered inaccessible, there may be some issues regarding the legality of certain data being stored outside national borders. As discussed in Computing Without Borders – What Works, What Doesn’t, these issues need to be clarified.
  • Monitoring – Since data is in the hands of the provider, monitoring may be a problem unless the proper processes are put in place. However, end-to-end monitoring over clouds is certainly possible.
  • Lock in – This is another reason cited by CIOs on their reluctance to embrace cloud computing. The company signing up for such services must examine whether the provider uses standardized technology. If dissatisfied with the service, the client can easily shift to another provider without having to incur initial setup costs once again.
  • Standardization – Now, this is something individual companies have little control over. With the absence of codified standards, it is very difficult to judge whether the service provided is good or bad. Also, the problem of locking in with a provider who uses uncommon technology is a distinct possibility. For more on this, have a look at Cloud Computing Standards: How Important Are They?”

In conclusion, we can say that cloud computing is not risk-free, but perhaps, that is the truth of almost every technology out there. Almost all the risks can be managed with minimal effort, and balanced against all the benefits it provides, there’s no doubt which side of the argument as to whether or not to adopt cloud computing, wins.

By Sourya Biswas

sourya

Sourya Biswas is a former risk analyst who has worked with several financial organizations of international repute, besides being a freelance journalist with several articles published online. After 6 years of work, he has decided to pursue further studies at the University of Notre Dame, where he has completed his MBA. He holds a Bachelors in Engineering from the Indian Institute of Information Technology. He is also a member of high-IQ organizations Mensa and Triple Nine Society and has been a prolific writer to CloudTweaks over the years... http://www.cloudtweaks.com/author/sourya/

One Response to Cloud Computing Risks (And How to Deal With Them)


CloudTweaks Sponsors - Find out more!


Popular

Top Viral Impact

Using Big Data To Make Cities Smarter

Using Big Data To Make Cities Smarter

Using Big Data To Make Cities Smarter The city of the future is impeccably documented. Sensors are used to measure air quality, traffic patterns, and crowd movement. Emerging neighborhoods are quickly recognized, public safety threats are found via social networks, and emergencies are dealt with quicklier. Crowdsourcing reduces commuting times, provides people with better transportation…

Forrester Releases Its “15 Emerging Technologies To Watch Before 2020” Report

Forrester Releases Its “15 Emerging Technologies To Watch Before 2020” Report

15 Emerging Technologies To Watch Before 2020 The cloud, big data, the internet of things, and wearable technology have all featured heavily in Forrester’s latest list of fifteen technologies to watch before 2020. It is becoming a reality for businesses that they need to adapt and change to an increasingly technologically-minded customer base. Traditional marketing…

5 Ways The Internet of Things Will Drive Cloud Growth

5 Ways The Internet of Things Will Drive Cloud Growth

5 Ways The Internet of Things Will Drive Cloud Growth The Internet of Things is the latest term to describe the interconnectivity of all our devices and home appliances. The goal of the internet of things is to create universal applications that are connected to all of the lights, TVs, door locks, air conditioning, and…

5 Considerations You Need To Review Before Investing In Data Analytics

5 Considerations You Need To Review Before Investing In Data Analytics

Review Before Investing In Data Analytics Big data, when handled properly, can lead to big change. Companies in a wide variety of industries are partnering with data analytics companies to increase operational efficiency and make evidence-based business decisions. From Kraft Foods using business intelligence (BI) to cut customer satisfaction analysis time in half, to a…

Big Data Analytics Adoption

Big Data Analytics Adoption

Big Data Analytics Adoption Big Data is an emerging phenomenon. Nowadays, many organizations have adopted information technology (IT) and information systems (IS) in business to handle huge amounts of data and gain better insights into their business. Many scholars believe that Business Intelligence (BI), solutions with Analytics capabilities, offer benefits to companies to achieve competitive…


Established in 2009, CloudTweaks is recognized as one of the leading influencers in cloud computing, big data and internet of things (IoT) information. Our goal is to continue to build our growing information portal, by providing the best in-depth articles, interviews, event listings, whitepapers, infographics and much more.

You can help continue to support our community by social sharing, sponsoring, partnering or contributing to this great educational resource.

Contact

CloudTweaks Media
Phone: 1 (212) 763-0021
contact@cloudtweaks.com

Join our newsletter