A recent Wall Street Journal article reporting on cloud security details the trends of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) when it comes to benefits of cloud adoption and the overall trend of outsourcing the cloud.
Cloud adoption statistics show 7 percent of small companies and 17 percent of mid-sized companies showing some kind of cloud activity in early 2010, which quickly doubled just 18 months later to 13 percent and 36 percent, respectively.
2011 Cloud Adoption Trends
Benefits of adopting an outsourced cloud (running applications and storing data on a managed data center’s servers) for small to mid-sized businesses:
- Higher levels of security by trusting your IT services to an experienced vendor. They can provide a greater level of service to support a more complex IT infrastructure due to the amount of capital invested in new technology and facilities. Small and mid-sized businesses likely do not have the budget or time to build or support in-house IT.
- Leveling the playing field – cloud computing gives small and mid-sized businesses access to an IT infrastructure normally only available to large companies. The drastically improved efficiency of faster application deployment from days or weeks (spent acquiring server hardware, software licenses, installing, testing, etc.) to just minutes (due to no hardware, scalable to demand, nearly instant deployment) allows SMBs more time to focus on their targeted business goals.
- Additional managed services to up the ante when it comes to security. Application or OS patches, antivirus updates, firewall protection, 24×7 tech support, Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS) to target unauthorized access, and more.
- The option of private cloud computing: As the penultimate of secure cloud hosting options, the private cloud allows for a private, one-tenant only environment with no shared applications and less opportunity for security breaches with greater control over the private environment.
- High data and application availability – in addition to higher security, a managed cloud with redundant servers, power supplies, network connections, firewalls and data center infrastructure provides automatic failover options to ensure critical applications and data are always available.
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Seeking Safety in Clouds (Wall Street Journal)