Lessons in Cloud Computing

During 2010, the U.S. Chief Information Officer released a “25-Point Implementation Plan to Reform Federal Information Management.” This plan required all agencies to adopt a “cloud-first” approach to data protection and management. But how can this approach be applied to businesses today? Below are several areas where companies can improve their cloud computing practices, according to a recent report by www.governmentciomagazine.com.

Area 1: Businesses should understand how the use of cloud computing applies to them and develop and implement standard language specific to their needs. In this way, differing interpretations of that language can be minimized ahead of any data loss events. Also, by involving all departments, realistic, cost-effective strategies can be developed specifically for those departments involved.

Area 2: One size doesn’t fit all when it comes to cloud computing. Each individual business has different needs. Agencies and companies that provide cloud services need to realize this, assess companies as they approach them, and give them the package that best meets their needs. Private businesses shouldn’t settle for anything less.

Area 3: Take all cloud computing subcontractors into account when looking for a company to host your data. It does no good for a cloud computing company you are considering using to have signed a confidentiality agreement if one of the companies they contract out to is not bound by those same agreements.

Area 4: It is important to verify that security protocols are working for each layer of protection, for both hardware and software. Companies should pay the same level of detail to protecting their virtual assets as they would their physical holdings.

Area 5: Develop automated methods to monitor system logs. Otherwise attacks such as an advanced persistent threat can go unnoticed for long periods, leading to greater data loss. Aggregation and visualization tools are crucial in finding and stopping threats to a company’s data via cloud computing.

For more information about cloud computing, visit: http://www.governmentciomagazine.com/2012/05/five-lessons-learned-cloud-assessments