Hi! Welcome to this week’s Third Party Thursday! My name is Brian Adams and I am the Chief Technology Officer here at Venminder. Today we’re going to talk about Cloud Computing.
"The Cloud," we hear this term a lot these days. So what exactly is "The Cloud"? That's right, "The Cloud" is just a generic name for "Someone else's computer". There are many benefits to using the Cloud. Let’s review a few of them.
Your vendors no longer have to build out data centers before knowing how those centers will be used. Also, the Cloud reduces idle resources by allowing your vendors to respond quickly to capacity demands as those demands rise. And lastly, it allows your vendors to increase agility by placing IT resource changes only a click away.
The Cloud offers more control over resource expense and change. So, those are just a few benefits. But like anything, where there are benefits, there are also costs. The Cloud reduces your control over the actual hardware upon which your vendors' resources depend.
Let’s talk now about the risks and how you manage them.
First, understand who has access to your sensitive data. Your vendors' cloud providers maintain their own hiring practices and access control procedures. It's important to ask and understand how your vendors manage this risk.
Another risk to consider . . . understand your role in compliance. Your vendors may house your data and services, but you are still accountable to your customers for security and integrity issues that may affect your data. Your vendors and their cloud providers will help mitigate this risk through controls like regular external audits, PEN tests, PCI and SSAE 16 standards compliance to name a few. Ask for this documentation and keep it handy.
Moving onto another risk. . .understand where your data lives. Your vendor decided to use a cloud storage solution.
And yet another is . . .data loss and recovery. For their own protection, your vendors probably encrypt your data.
These questions are valid when your vendors use their own data centers and they remain so in The Cloud.
Lastly . . . make sure you and your vendors have an exit strategy.
In summary, the Cloud has many benefits, but like everything, there are risks.
Thanks for watching! I’m Brian, and please, remember to subscribe to next week’s Third Party Thursday video.