Planning and thoroughness keys to efficient, secure cloud deployment, experts say

April 13, 2012

With the huge array of benefits it offers, it is unsurprising that many businesses are rushing headlong into the cloud. Industry experts widely agree that in a short amount of time, cloud computing will be seen as an essential, rather than optional, component of most organizations' infrastructures. However, IT and security professionals warn that adopting cloud computing technology without proper planning can prove disastrous from both efficiency and security standpoints.

Thor Olavsrud of Network World recently highlighted these issues, and how to avoid them. According to Olavsrud, the reason why many organizations run into cloud deployment issues is because they fail to take into account the differences between how they use software inside the enterprise and how it will be used in the cloud. The cloud represents a major shift in network processes, and only by acknowledging and adapting for these differences can a company smoothly transition into cloud-based functions.

Additionally, Olavsrud pointed out that many companies believe that by moving to the cloud they can reduce or even disband their IT departments. This, he claims, is a significant mistake, as IT staff are still necessary to ensure the integrity and security of cloud services.

In order to attain a better conception of the cloud and therefore how to respond to its challenges, Jessica Herrera-Flanigan of Next Gov recently compared cloud computing to mainframe services. She argues that the two are essentially similar, as both represent a centralized computing location. Consequently, by considering the security issues that were relevant to mainframes, companies can better understand how to protect themselves from similar threats that may now affect cloud-based services.

-McAfee Cloud Security