With Big Data expanding exponentially; and more and more content coming online, no industry can afford to keep all their data on their own servers. This is why cloud computing is catching up for both multinationals and small and medium sized businesses. However, while cloud computing may seem like an answer to your data maintenance problems, it has its own issues and concerns. So read up carefully if you’re contacting a storage provider for your company’s sensitive data.
Issue 1: Security
The biggest issue is whether the database manager you hire to store your information is capable of securing it. Hacking and phishing attacks on company databases are around a billion per minute. The hacking news that made the headlines last year was about North Korean sponsored hackers attacking Sony Picture’s database and releasing several terabytes of sensitive data that included everything from e-mails between employees to cuts of to-be released films. So you have to be careful about trusting your information to a third party service provider.
How to avoid this pitfall? Your data is routed to several networks and systems while being transferred to the cloud storage server. So, one thing you can do is to lessen the routes your data takes. Try to hire data security teams from the local or national level, or at least make sure that the servers are situated in the EU.
Issue 2: Choosing the wrong service provider
It is an issue commonly faced by SMEs. Very often, they sign an SLA with a major player in the database management field, and thus is given less priority. You must ensure that your cyberspace security provider and data manager is in touch with you all the time. With data constantly being exchanged among your company, other companies and the consumer, any lapse in data synchronization can set you back a long way.
Again, make sure you check the data package on the SLA carefully. The price that data providers quote is usually a fraction of what your bill actually comes to with all the additional charges. Also look for features like a dual link network (in case one cloud server connection fails), data encryption facilities, and different service packages.
Issue 3: Not having efficient in-house IT department
Most companies, once they out-source their data, do not want to keep an in-house IT department on their payroll. This is a crucial mistake as it leads to your losing control over your data. In absence of a trained IT back-up, your customers directly go to your database manager if something goes wrong with their data. You must have a strong IT department to manage and structure your data once it is on the cloud, and also retain a degree of control through separate encryption strategies.
Issue 4: Lack of interface compatibility
Most cloud storage systems use object-based interfaces, which are not compatible with several company software or applications. So before you upload all your data on cloud, make sure the data gets sequentially uploaded without any hardware errors. Another problem that quite frequently occurs is the incompatibility of bandwidth and upload speed. It is important that you make a shift from the popularly used ADSL wires to fiber optic wires while connecting your company server with the cloud server, because the information exchange through fiber optic cables is extremely fast with almost no loss of data. Also, ensure that the database manager will constantly have enough memory for you to keep updating your data, preferably with some to spare.
Issue 5: Data de-duplication issues
Very often, cloud networks are slow in updating the data entrusted to them. As a result, numerous files and records get duplicated over and over again. Sometimes, an update which pertains to two files together is applied only to one file. These are issues that both companies and data service providers are grappling with. Another crucial aspect is that of disaster recovery (DR). You need to ask the provider what will happen to your data if the servers get hit by accidents, like fires, storms, flooding etc, only to name a few. Before you sign up with the provider, ask hard questions about data recovery and backup. And do proper research to understand what exactly they are providing.