Despite the numerous benefits of cloud computing, only 33% of companies have a “full steam ahead” attitude toward adopting the cloud. That’s according to a survey of over 200 IT and IT security leaders by the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA), which identified 6 issues holding back cloud projects. Chief among them, companies are worried about how secure their data is once it leaves the company’s firewall. These days, there are news headlines about data breaches and software vulnerabilities every day.
These regular headlines, especially mega breaches like those at Target and Sony that led to executives at both companies resigning, have made the security of data in the cloud an executive-level and board-level concern at 61% of companies. Against a backdrop of increasingly sophisticated attacks aimed at stealing corporate data, many IT leaders feel uncomfortable with a perceived loss of control over corporate data. The Cloud Security Alliance survey identified 6 primary issues holding back cloud adoption, summarized below, starting with the most common issues:
1. Security of data – It’s no surprise that data security tops the list of concerns that hold companies back from cloud adoption. 73% of survey respondents indicated this is a big red flag for them. Cloud service providers are targets data breaches (e.g. email service and online note-taking service), which makes it critical for companies to use risk mitigation strategies and tactics, such as encrypting or tokenizing data before it ever goes to a cloud service.
2. Non-compliance with regulatory mandates – PCI DSS, HIPAA/HITECH, GLBA, FISMA, FERPA, EU data protection, et. al. Whatever the regulatory acronym, you will find that 38% of companies are concerned with how they can assure compliance with regulations if their data is in the cloud. A security breach that leads to non-compliance with a regulatory mandate can result in expensive fines, loss of business, lawsuits, and potentially even criminal penalties (as in the case of ITAR non-compliance).
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