Common Threats To Cloud Computing

Common Threats To Cloud Computing

The core agencies of the US government have a central plan, Cloud First, which aims to shift the majority of their operations to the cloud. Before the plan can be implemented, it must go through a process of evaluation by the agencies concerned. In December 2010, a Cloud First policy was released by the Office Of Management and Budget so that federal agencies could implement the shift to cloud computing services if such agencies could find a cost-effective, reliable, and secure cloud computing service. The target was to move three of the core agencies’ technology services by June of the following year.

The Government Accountability Office recently released an overall progress report on the implementation plan. It reported that the Office found common challenges which the organization feels represent a hindrance to the Cloud First initiative. According to the report, one of the common threats is that cloud computing providers must first meet federal security requirements. Each of the government’s core agencies has their own security requirements, which cloud computing suppliers must satisfy first before such suppliers can be provided with a service contract. The problem is that most of these agencies have very strict requirements which suppliers find hard to meet.

Another problem is the incompleteness or insufficiency of current federal guidance for the use of cloud computing services. Guidelines such as assessment of security levels and purchasing must be created in order to hasten cloud computing implementation. A third problem is the acquisition of expertise and knowledge. Most of these agencies may not have the necessary staff, resources, or tools needed to deploy cloud computing services. Such agencies sometimes find it difficult to instruct their staff with the cloud computing tools and processes. Thus, some agencies are reluctant to implement the Cloud First Initiative.

Also, core government agencies have difficulties with the certifications and accreditations of cloud computing suppliers. This is partly because the first operational capabilities of the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program have not been reached. Another common challenge is that these government agencies must search for cloud computing vendors who can assure interoperability and data portability so that these offices can change suppliers in the future. These core agencies must be able to determine if these vendors have a lock-in with a certain product technology or platform.

There are also cultural barriers within a government agency which must be overcome. Cloud computing may pave the way for leaks of sensitive information to the public. Thus, government agencies are reluctant to move their operations to the cloud. Finally, due to the scalable and on-demand nature of cloud computing solutions, budgeting and contracting may face constraints. It will be difficult to budget for cloud computing services because of the fluctuating costs due to the on-demand and scalable nature of the service. According to the General Accountability Office report, cloud implementations must be planned wisely, and old systems must be retired in order for each government agency to enjoy the benefits of cloud computing, such as the improvement of operational efficiencies and reduction of costs.

By Florence de Borja

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.

Disaster Recovery – A Thing Of The Past!

Disaster Recovery – A Thing Of The Past!

Disaster Recovery  Ok, ok – I understand most of you are saying disaster recovery (DR) is still a critical aspect of running any type of operations. After all – we need to secure our future operations in case of disaster. Sure – that is still the case but things are changing – fast. There are…

Lavabit, Edward Snowden and the Legal Battle For Privacy

Lavabit, Edward Snowden and the Legal Battle For Privacy

The Legal Battle For Privacy In early June 2013, Edward Snowden made headlines around the world when he leaked information about the National Security Agency (NSA) collecting the phone records of tens of millions of Americans. It was a dramatic story. Snowden flew to Hong Kong and then Russia to avoid deportation to the US,…

Don’t Be Intimidated By Data Governance

Don’t Be Intimidated By Data Governance

Data Governance Data governance, the understanding of the raw data of an organization is an area IT departments have historically viewed as a lose-lose proposition. Not doing anything means organizations run the risk of data loss, data breaches and data anarchy – no control, no oversight – the Wild West with IT is just hoping…

What the Dyn DDoS Attacks Taught Us About Cloud-Only EFSS

What the Dyn DDoS Attacks Taught Us About Cloud-Only EFSS

DDoS Attacks October 21st, 2016 went into the annals of Internet history for the large scale Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks that made popular Internet properties like Twitter, SoundCloud, Spotify and Box inaccessible to many users in the US. The DDoS attack happened in three waves targeting DNS service provider Dyn, resulting in a total of about…

Staying on Top of Your Infrastructure-as-a-Service Security Responsibilities

Staying on Top of Your Infrastructure-as-a-Service Security Responsibilities

Infrastructure-as-a-Service Security It’s no secret many organizations rely on popular cloud providers like Amazon and Microsoft for access to computing infrastructure. The many perks of cloud services, such as the ability to quickly scale resources without the upfront cost of buying physical servers, have helped build a multibillion-dollar cloud industry that continues to grow each…

5 Things To Consider About Your Next Enterprise Sharing Solution

5 Things To Consider About Your Next Enterprise Sharing Solution

Enterprise File Sharing Solution Businesses have varying file sharing needs. Large, multi-regional businesses need to synchronize folders across a large number of sites, whereas small businesses may only need to support a handful of users in a single site. Construction or advertising firms require sharing and collaboration with very large (several Gigabytes) files. Financial services…

5% Of Companies Have Embraced The Digital Innovation Fostered By Cloud Computing

5% Of Companies Have Embraced The Digital Innovation Fostered By Cloud Computing

Embracing The Cloud We love the stories of big complacent industry leaders having their positions sledge hammered by nimble cloud-based competitors. Saleforce.com chews up Oracle’s CRM business. Airbnb has a bigger market cap than Marriott. Amazon crushes Walmart (and pretty much every other retailer). We say: “How could they have not seen this coming?” But, more…

Are Cloud Solutions Secure Enough Out-of-the-box?

Are Cloud Solutions Secure Enough Out-of-the-box?

Out-of-the-box Cloud Solutions Although people may argue that data is not safe in the Cloud because using cloud infrastructure requires trusting another party to look after mission critical data, cloud services actually are more secure than legacy systems. In fact, a recent study on the state of cloud security in the enterprise market revealed that…

Cost of the Cloud: Is It Really Worth It?

Cost of the Cloud: Is It Really Worth It?

Cost of the Cloud Cloud computing is more than just another storage tier. Imagine if you’re able to scale up 10x just to handle seasonal volumes or rely on a true disaster-recovery solution without upfront capital. Although the pay-as-you-go pricing model of cloud computing makes it a noticeable expense, it’s the only solution for many…