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6 Common Cloud Misconceptions Exposed

Even as cloud computing grows more and more common in the business world, there remain certain, stubborn misconceptions regarding the technology. In some cases, these cloud myths hamper its adoption. The decision of whether or not an organization switches to the cloud should be based on in-depth cloud knowledge, organizational goals and needs, and careful research – not false information. We want to eliminate some of the misunderstandings of cloud computing so businesses can make more informed decisions. Here are six cloud misconceptions, and what the facts really are:

Cloud is “either-or” – I must be in or out.

Nope, that’s what the hybrid cloud model is all about! In fact, many businesses find it most beneficial to move some areas of the business to the cloud environment, while keeping other areas in-house. This is particularly important in the transition phase, as you’ll be able to see how everything works in the cloud.

The cloud is only secure if I build my own environment.

Again, not true. Cloud security was the primary barrier to adoption, but it has finally matured and is statistically a huge driver in cloud adoption. In fact, cloud security is often better than what organizations currently experience on their own. A provider’s entire focus goes to clients’ cloud environments and their security. Providers also have the resources and budget to make security a top priority, when many businesses don’t.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that cloud security is a shared responsibility. The business continues to hold responsibility – it doesn’t simply transfer all security to a cloud provider. An organization remains responsible for managing responsible, strong passwords, preventing the loss or theft of devices, protecting against identify fraud, implementing strict BYOD policies, and more. A cloud computing provider is in charge of the security of its application and IT infrastructure, but a business still has to exercise due diligence on its end.

A secondary misconception surrounding security is that the public cloud is inherently  insecure. This probably has something to do with the word “public,” but it’s important to understand that it doesn’t mean your business information and infrastructure is suddenly accessible to the entire public Internet. It simply means that you’re accessing shared resources, and these resources have the necessary security measures in place to keep your information separate from others’. A public cloud environment is just as vulnerable as a private environment or an in-house one, so the focus should really just remain on implementing the best security measures, no matter what.

Pay-As-You-Go is all I need to save.

Yes, a huge perk of the cloud is that it allows you to adjust the amount of resources you’re using and then pay accordingly. This is the pay-as-you-go model, and it adds a lot of flexibility to a business’ budget. However, simply moving to the cloud and then never thinking about it again could actually diminish your potential return on investment!

There are other ways to save in the cloud, and it’s important to discover how you can achieve additional business efficiencies and access innovation. It’s about how you continue to consume cloud resources, rather than simply moving into the space. When attention is paid to business and digital transformation, an organization can actually build upon the base benefits of cloud computing.

If I move to the cloud, my provider can access all my data.

Can you imagine the impact on a provider, and the cloud industry overall, if it was discovered snooping on client data? That would never be okay! Cloud security has become so strong, and such an essential piece of the cloud conversation, that providers have built measures that ensure they can’t even access customer data themselves. Authorized access remains in the hands of the business, even if the cloud resources themselves are powered by a cloud provider.

All cloud applications are equal.

Just as all cloud providers cannot be considered equal, neither can cloud applications. These programs have different levels of importance and priority within a business, so they should be addressed accordingly. Depending on the sensitivity of the application data and how critical it is, different policies can be implemented to manage and secure the application in the cloud.

The biggest cloud issue is security.

Actually, not exactly. A huge issue right now is the use of rogue cloud services. These are services that employees are using without company approval. For example, users might be visiting any number of free sites and services for things like storage or application needs, but if these are unapproved by the business, they’re not necessarily safe options. A real risk right now that is often overlooked is just not knowing what’s going on within your business, like how employees are using data, devices and the Internet. This is a result of employee eagerness to experience the efficiency and flexibility that cloud computing provides, so businesses should address this and make it a beneficial business initiative, rather than allowing it to become a problem.

Misconceptions surrounding cloud computing used to be major barriers to cloud adoption. Fortunately, the technology has passed the beginning adoption cycle and is ready for mass consumption by businesses. Don’t let cloud misconceptions stand in the way. Take some of our cloud courses to better understand the technology and decide if it’s right for your organization.

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