With the digital transformation underway, IT departments are looking to evolve, or risk being left behind. Yet funds for this “coming-of-age” don’t just appear, so IT has to keep ROI and TCO top of mind. To handle this fine balance, companies are flocking to the cloud to transform business in a cost-effective manner.
State of Cloud Adoption
Hybrid cloud is gaining popularity for its ability to overcome challenges faced by many businesses. In a recent study from IDG, 83 percent of respondents said they either use hybrid cloud or have plans to do so. The numbers aren’t just positive for adoption, but also for usage, showing that 20 percent of survey respondents already host a significant number of workloads in a hybrid cloud environment.
The survey confirms what we already know: People love the cloud for its role in improving innovation and the customer experience, as well as the perspective it provides on real-time business decisions and operations.
Hybrid Cloud Delivers Measurable Results
Evidence from the IDG survey shows that adopting the cloud can help organizations increase IT agility to speed and simplify digital transformation initiatives, while also enabling them to save IT costs and redirect more of those savings to improving business outcomes. In complex, hyper-connected network environments, these results have never been more important.
Using the Cloud in 2017
Businesses are using the cloud to break down the silos that have traditionally hampered IT agility. Predictions related to this trend include:
- Software as a Service will take off with more variety in applications
- New network visibility tools will accelerate Infrastructure as a Service plans
- Public cloud will no longer be limited to usage for test/dev or burst capacity
- Cyber criminals will target the cloud for data breaches
These last two points are especially significant and suggest the importance of considering security in your cloud adoption strategy. Because as businesses move more mission-critical applications and data to the cloud (aka the “crown jewels”), it follows that attackers will step up their efforts to access it.
Security Implications in Cloud Environments
Experts agree, predicting we’ll see an uptick in targeted attacks this year and growth in the number of breaches. Cloud adopters need to be prepared for the impending influx.
But with no industry-wide consensus on cloud security best practices, having a partner that specializes in cloud security is paramount to creating a reliable strategy. You also need to properly vet the security standards of cloud vendors before entering into a partnership — lest you put the security of your “crown jewels at risk.”
Lastly, to fully benefit from the flexibility and scalability of cloud computing, your security has to be equally flexible and scalable; and scrutinize cloud data with the same intensity as data traversing physical network environments.
Our partner, Fortinet, approaches cloud security with an end-to-end solution that extends the protection of its best-of-breed firewalls, intrusion detection/intrusion prevention systems, application control, content filtering, sandbox technology and other tools into the cloud.
With Fortinet’s security fabric architecture, organizations also benefit from a centralized communication interface for sharing threat intelligence and coordinating countermeasures between physical- and cloud-based security solutions. When integrated into the fabric, Fortinet products function as a single security solution providing end-to-end protection and consistent intelligence and policy enforcement regardless of where it’s deployed.
As a partner of Fortinet, CCSI has the best-in-class expertise and technology to protect assets from the data center to cloud and across all endpoints. Contact us to learn more.