Small and medium sized businesses prepare for disaster with cloud security

May 14, 2012

As the market for cloud computing services continues its growth across the business landscape, small and medium sized companies are embracing the benefits of cloud security to improve disaster preparedness, according to a survey by a major software security company.

Of popular cutting-edge technologies - such as server virtualization and the use of mobile devices - cloud computing is the most popular, according to the survey. Forty percent of the responding SMBs are using public clouds while 43 percent of the businesses have deployed private clouds.

Disaster preparedness in the cloud
While data security in the cloud is sometimes a concern - especially regarding smaller businesses - the benefits of storing important data away from the physical offices plays a major role in getting SMBs to switch to cloud servers. In the switch to private cloud use, 37 percent claimed disaster preparedness as a major contributing factor in the decision. The figure was close - at 34 percent - for the transition to the public cloud.

By adopting the cloud, SMBs gain some of the benefits of larger businesses when it comes to disaster preparation. A natural disaster such as flood or fire would normally cripple a smaller business, but the remote storing of data on the cloud limits the impact of such an occurrence. Those companies who have adopted either type of cloud computing saw a marked improvement in their disaster preparedness. For private cloud use, 43 percent of the earlier adopters saw improvement. When a company decided to go with the public cloud, there was little drop off, as 41 percent of SMBs who instituted its use saw improvement.

Beyond cloud security
Integration and efficiency has been another major factor in the growth of the small business market for cloud services. A survey by SMB IT research firm Techaisle indicated that SMBs experience up to a 39 percent in employee productivity thanks to the cloud's automation of tasks and reduction of manual processes.

Market research company Forrester believes that as the cloud continues to grow - led by SaaS products - the total market will surpass $60 billion by the end of 2012. The public SaaS market alone will account for $33 billion by the end of the year, according to Forrester. So great is the growth potential, according the research firm, that the market will reach $241 billion by 2020, nearly six times that $40.7 billion it accounted for in 2010.

-McAfee Cloud Security