Executive Briefings

Is Your Faith in the Security of the Cloud Justified?

Why is there such certainty that a catastrophic event will occur in cloud computing? For starters, we're on a path to remove all resiliencies from our global business engine. Five years ago, if you took a random sampling you would have discovered that most companies had physical control over their mission-critical data and processes. It was usually in the form of "Bob in IT" with a team of computer geeks tending closets filled with servers. It wasn't perfect, but if one, ten, a hundred, or even a thousand companies lost their data, or installed a bad software patch, or fell prey to a malicious attack, the lifeblood of business everywhere would still flow. It would be an isolated incident, with little or no damage done to the greater economy.

Today, many companies have put-or are beginning to put-their business-critical information into the hands of four or five companies that specialize in cloud services. These companies have placed all of their customer-specific data into a cloud run by one company, and other critical systems into another cloud run by a different company. The logic is simple: If one cloud fails, just move the information to another cloud.

The problem is that different clouds are far from compatible; the information that went into building one cannot easily flow to another-well, not without a considerable investment in rebuilding much of your system from scratch over weeks, months, or in some cases years.

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Why is there such certainty that a catastrophic event will occur in cloud computing? For starters, we're on a path to remove all resiliencies from our global business engine. Five years ago, if you took a random sampling you would have discovered that most companies had physical control over their mission-critical data and processes. It was usually in the form of "Bob in IT" with a team of computer geeks tending closets filled with servers. It wasn't perfect, but if one, ten, a hundred, or even a thousand companies lost their data, or installed a bad software patch, or fell prey to a malicious attack, the lifeblood of business everywhere would still flow. It would be an isolated incident, with little or no damage done to the greater economy.

Today, many companies have put-or are beginning to put-their business-critical information into the hands of four or five companies that specialize in cloud services. These companies have placed all of their customer-specific data into a cloud run by one company, and other critical systems into another cloud run by a different company. The logic is simple: If one cloud fails, just move the information to another cloud.

The problem is that different clouds are far from compatible; the information that went into building one cannot easily flow to another-well, not without a considerable investment in rebuilding much of your system from scratch over weeks, months, or in some cases years.

Read Full Article