infoTECH Feature

March 27, 2013

Public or Private Cloud, Hackers Don't Discriminate

As more businesses adopt cloud-based services, security experts warn that hackers are following close behind.

In Australia, nearly half of businesses (43 percent) have adopted cloud computing, according to Frost & Sullivan’s (News - Alert) latest ICT outlook. The Australian cloud computing market was worth $882.4 million in 2012 and is expected to reach $3.33 billion in 2016. Frost & Sullivan expects this market to grow at a CAGR of 40.3 percent from 2011 to 2016.

In Australia and around the world, many businesses are taking a cautious approach and deploying a private cloud with the idea that it is more inconspicuous to cybercriminals.

For example, NAB is taking an unhurried approach as the firm shifts toward cloud, the company’s principal security architect Matt Lowth told ABC News.

“Our internal private cloud environment we’re building today is going to be able to deliver quite a number of our internal services – things like our internal mail,” Lowth said.

But in reality, it doesn’t matter if data is stored on-premise or in a private or public cloud, according to Sean Kopelke, spokesman for security company Symantec (News - Alert). He said hackers don’t discriminate and will target wherever the information is stored.

“Irrelevant of whether it’s in the cloud or whether it’s sitting in a corporate environment, they’re still trying to get access to that information,” Kopelke said.

However, because of their size, clouds are a much more inviting target for criminals then a company’s traditional IT infrastructure, according to a Symantec whitepaper.

As concerns about security run rampant among IT decision makers, private cloud deployments across workloads is the primary preference among enterprise cloud service buyers, according to new research.

In fact, 70 percent of responders said they wanted to run financial applications and ERP in a private cloud setting, 60 percent said the same about e-mail and collaboration, and 55 percent said private cloud was the place for custom applications, according to the Everest Group report “Enterprise Cloud Adoption Survey 2013.”

Survey results revealed that security continues to emerge as the strongest inhibitor of cloud adoption, followed by concerns around integration.

Edited by Brooke Neuman

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