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What do CSOs Think of the Cloud?

Cloud computing is one of the newest and most landmark innovations available to network users, though many consumers have yet to embrace the technology to its fullest extent. With benefits that apply to both home computer users and business owners, many individuals are left wondering exactly how a cloud structure can increase their productivity. Chief Security Officers in particular are left with some very valid questions regarding cloud storage and network security.

Data Accessibility

According to IDG Research Services, 56% of corporate and business CSOs cite challenges concerning data accessibility and their cloud storage systems. Considering the amount of data being processed and assimilated by some of today's top companies, particularly IT firms, as well as the number of users accessing and modifying information via the cloud architecture, it is easy to see how data accessibility can become convoluted through the use of cloud computing.

Cloud Security

Security is a top concern regarding the evolving architecture of cloud computing. Any trustworthy cloud host will provide at least three layers of security control, including the control enforcement layer, control management layer and security management layer. These individual layers are designed to facilitate different security protocol, including firewall or antivirus usage, role-based access controls, authentication requests, encryption keys, compliance policies, best practices definitions, risk assessment strategies and more.

CSOs in particular are concerned about the current state of cloud security, though IDG Research Services suggests that approximately 52% of CSOs are optimistic regarding future security spending. This represents the strongest level of confidence in security spending within the previous 15 years.

Individual client requirements are one of the biggest reasons for increased security spending regarding cloud services. In fact, 41% of CSOs indicated that client specifications are directly responsible for their firm's security spending, as reported by IDG Research Services. This is great news for clients that rely on a third-party company to maintain a customized cloud computing architecture.

Pursuing Industry Standards in Cloud Security

Most CSOs are in favor of implementing industry standards in order to govern and dictate cloud storage security. According to IDG Research Services, 64% of all CSOs interviewed want to establish and maintain a strict set of standards involving cloud security.

There is one fatal flaw associated with the implementation of industry standards. Because each cloud is created for a specific client, network or business, cloud storage systems tend to vary greatly from one to the next. Moreover, the external vendors who provide cloud services, including hosting and maintenance, do not share the same capabilities, techniques and strategies of some of their peers. This would force current vendors to adapt to technology that may or may not be feasible for their own business.

However, an enterprise hybrid cloud model has been established to show how a standardized set of security features can benefit both private and public entities. Under this model, individual users will have the ability to choose which security features they need and which ones they do not. This ultimately offers consumers and business owners increased flexibility and control over data accessibility, modification, storage and security.

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