Why everything you think you know about Cloud Security is wrong - Part II

    
 

Continuing my previous blog regarding cloud security myths we start with the next myth on the list:

Myth: Cloud Security is a New Challenge

The truth is cloud security isn’t new, it’s not even unique. “Security concerns are really independent of the cloud”. They’re just an extension of what's being dealt with in the physical infrastructure. Cloud computing changes the playing field but most of the underlying security concerns such as protecting the infrastructure and data are old news and within the scope of today's capabilities. Security requirements are the same regardless of physical or cloud components. Best of all these issues are dealt with by the cloud provider in most cases freeing you to focus on high priority, profitable issues.

Myth: The Cloud is a fad

Although “the cloud” became a buzzword in popular culture in the past few years, neither the concept nor the technologies underpinning it are all that new. The idea that computing should be organized like a public utility goes as far back as 1961, when computer scientist John McCarthy talked about it at MIT’s centennial celebration. It wasn’t until the Internet matured, however, that the vision became practical. Salesforce.com began to deliver applications through a Web site in 1999, and Amazon (whose owner also owns The Washington Post) launched its cloud-based services in 2002.

What’s changed more recently is the level of investment in the cloud — and that ensures it isn’t going away anytime soon. The research firm Gartner predicts that companies will spend $788 billion on public cloud services in the next four years. And the McKinsey consulting firm forecasts that cloud technology could have an economic impact of $1.7 trillion to $6.2 trillion a year by 2025.

Myth: Cloud Computing is for Geeks

A mother tells her son. “I need all my company contacts saved from my company cloud to my cloud, my personal cloud. Can you do that?” Her son replies, “Mom, you have no idea what any of those words mean, do you?”

She’s not alone. A survey commissioned by Citrix in 2012 found that a majority of American adults didn’t understand what “cloud computing” meant, with 51 percent believing that stormy weather could interfere with it and 54 percent saying they never used it — even though 95 percent actually did.

Cloud-computing powers online banking and shopping, e-mail programs such as Gmail and Yahoo, social networks, online photo and music storage, and digital libraries such as Netflix and Kindle. It’s also increasingly what supports American workplaces. The annual North Bridge Future of Cloud Computing Survey found that 75 percent of companies were using cloud services in 2013, up from 67 percent in 2012.

The basic concept is that data and applications stored remotely can be delivered over the Internet, turning computing into a utility like electricity and water. “The cloud” is just a metaphor; nothing actually happens in the sky. For individuals, it means we can use our computers, phones or tablets to access our information wherever we are. For businesses, it means they can access computing resources on a scale once available only to companies with enormous amounts of money and technology know-how. The cloud can help them get by without hiring lots of geeks.

Stay tuned for the final 4 cloud security myths in our next post.

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