In DaaS, the customer’s desktop environment is hosted in the cloud. The DaaS provider manages and stores both user data and software configurations. In IaaS, it is the customer that hosts its entire infrastructure and is responsible for maintaining and operating it. PaaS provides users with a development platform to build and run more specialized applications in the cloud.
Cloud computing services enable businesses to access needed computing resources without suffering from the complexity of managing IT infrastructure, as well as the associated costs of maintaining and upgrading hardware. Cloud providers may deliver all of this over a combination of servers, data centers, networks, storage platforms, communication links, etc.
In a cloud computing environment, all of the resources are virtualized. This means that IT users have access to a self-service portal where they can set their own workload requirements and have them met without any kind of special effort on their part.
There is always definable risk when it comes to security. Cloud computing services are just like any other technology in this regard that they are not completely foolproof in terms of security.
With cloud computing, Stortz (2009) proposes that the new environment will be focused on on-demand access to services and applications, with a reduction in required capital expenditures. The nature of that access will be based on a “pay as you go” model.
Cloud computing will continue to evolve but will remain part of the future of IT. Many organizations are already using some type of cloud solution to fulfill certain business needs. Cloud Computing Services has become more mature and offers the right solutions for organizations whether they need extra storage space or want to move their existing IT infrastructure into the cloud. It is no longer about if a company should use cloud computing services, but how they should do it.
The growing move to the cloud will change many aspects of IT business and cost management. Cloud computing has started to evolve in recent years with a strong focus on security and control. By removing the financial burden of IT infrastructure, companies are better able to focus on higher-level projects that require total business focus.
Many technology vendors have begun offering cloud computing services, including Oracle, IBM, Oracle Corporation, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, Microsoft Corporation and Google Inc.. Other vendors, including Amazon Web Services and Rackspace offer a range of services.
Cloud computing is an evolving technology. Several important changes over the next few years will change how the technology evolves. There are also several issues which are continuously changing the future of Cloud Computing including:
As cloud computing become mainstream market, more organizations are actively looking at ways to adapt their application portfolio and address new technologies that will meet them with specific needs. Some organizations consider to integrate application in cloud paradigm. The challenge lies in designing the right strategy for application integration.
The future of Cloud Computing is based on three key areas – Openness, from Software-as-a-Service to Platform-as-a-Service; Integration with both public and private clouds; and Platform as a Service (i.e. Infrastructure as a Service plus Software). According to Gartner, by 2018 end, 50% of new SaaS software business will be delivered as PaaS SaaS model at low cost.
According to the Cloud Computing Security Alliance (CCSA), “cloud computing can deliver a more secure environment than traditional IT because it is accessible through the Internet, and participants have widely distributed, but linked, resources.”
The security in cloud computing is essential for organizations that are using cloud services. The threat of cyber attack is one of the major challenges facing businesses. Organizations often choose to use business-as-usual approaches to e-business and e-governance in the cloud. However, using typical security measures does not provide organizations with all of the benefits of cloud computing. The primary advantages include:
According to a study, cyber criminals have set their sights on companies offering cloud services. This is true in general, with cloud services, as well as specific to SaaS and PaaS.
In 2013, a study showed that the two main concerns of enterprise security professionals were: Paradoxically, many industry analysts say cloud computing will only increase the number and variety of threats. Security analyst Gartner predicts that by 2016 more than half of large enterprises will lose control of sensitive information as a result of cloud computing initiatives.
The CCSA believes that “cloud computing is a more secure environment than traditional IT because it is accessible through the (Internet), and participants have widely distributed but linked resources. However, in order to be a secure environment, you must take the necessary precautions to ensure that data stored within the cloud is protected from unauthorized access by an individual or group that gains physical control (e.g., hacking).” The CCSA recommends three primary steps any organization should take when using cloud computing services:
According to security experts, not having a good network firewall can be one of the biggest disadvantages of cloud computing. Cloud providers have their own firewalls, but they are not very sophisticated. This means that the organization does not have confidence in that equipment and could still be vulnerable to a cyber attack. The recommended solution is to have a more competent firewall.
Even though the CCSA recommends keeping firewall in mind, it is the last of cloud computing’s five necessary steps to prevent loss of data. Many organizations plan to use the cloud based on cost savings, without considering what they are losing if their data loss occurs. For example, when an individual emails information that is stored on a cloud storage service, there is no way to recover it because there is no backup, and the information may be distributed across multiple devices and locations.
If your organization’s mission is data protection, put in place an effective disaster recovery plan (DRP). The cloud can make DRP more complicated, but it doesn’t make it impossible. Some organizations are even examining how to run their entire business on the cloud and still keep DRP in place. The first step in a DRP plan is to identify the critical systems and data through risk analysis and disaster impact analysis. Next, implement an effective backup system that spans multiple sites and has sufficient recovery point objectives (RPOs) to meet the business requirements. After that, choose a storage solution for primary data storage (e.g., tape, disk-based storage) that is near the actual devices using replication technology to ensure zero or minimum RTOs.