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Small businesses and IT managers face many complex Data Management issues, not least of which is security. The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has shown that regulators are taking a hard stance on data security, and California’s passage of a similar act means other U.S. states will likely follow suit.
The growing bring-your-own-device approach and the ever-present security issues surrounding data storage mean that Cloud migrations are proving advantageous to many businesses. Thanks to built-in security protocols such as advanced data encryption, authentication solutions, proper VPN configuration, and endpoint security, the Cloud can do wonders to bolster your defenses.
For example, Cloud providers can encrypt data as it enters and leaves Cloud-hosted servers, and access controls can limit the data usage to authorized personnel. Other measures include security logging and monitoring as well as intrusion protection. Many Cloud providers will include these as standard features. Other Cloud advantages include scalability, consistent cost, ease of updates, and robust reporting tools.
A Hybrid Cloud solution connects the dots for a lot of companies that are hesitant to go full-Cloud because hybrid systems utilize both the Public Cloud infrastructure and private, on-premise hardware. This approach sounds complex, but it can be presented in a unified interface for a seamless user experience.
The Hype Around Hybrid
The truth is many small business owners have concerns about the security of Public Clouds and the flexibility of Private Clouds, and that’s why Hybrid Clouds are so popular. Hybrid Cloud allows you to take advantage of dynamic workload balancing capabilities on-premises, in Private Clouds, and in Public Clouds, too. Without compromising usability, a Hybrid Cloud enhances security by allowing the use of the Private Cloud and your own in-house servers.
When we implemented a Hybrid Cloud solution for a manufacturing firm, it enabled remote workers to securely access on-premise servers and Office 365 applications. We also deployed a Citrix-powered hosted desktop that presented the same Windows desktop experience across all their devices, whether employees opted to use iPads, Windows laptops, or Android devices. Because data was accessible only through the hosted desktop, we alleviated security concerns that plague the use of employee devices.
When it comes to a Hybrid Cloud solution, there are three main factors that business owners and IT departments should consider:
- Cost-saving possibility
The Hybrid Cloud model can offer businesses the most bang for their bucks. The Public Cloud is generally accepted as the most cost-effective solution, but a Private Cloud allows an organization to exercise greater control over its most sensitive and critical workloads. Fortunately, a Hybrid Cloud solution can combine the best of both worlds, striking a balance between price and protection that meets a wide variety of needs. If budget is a major concern surrounding your Cloud adoption, a hybrid model can help address it.
- Compliance-enhancing features
Extensive regulations around data storage can be a roadblock for organizations operating in the Public Cloud. By pursuing a Hybrid Cloud solution, a company can also include a Private Cloud that’s designed to meet regulatory requirements for data handling and storage. Businesses that fail to achieve compliance can face stiff penalties and lose the trust of their customers. If compliance is an issue, a Hybrid Cloud model is the solution.
- Opportunity for scaling
The Hybrid Cloud model is perfect for an organization that isn’t ready to commit to the Cloud. Because business can test the Cloud in a limited, noncommittal way, hybrid systems offer a chance to explore a variety of configurations, allowing companies to find an optimum Cloud solution. Most Cloud adoptions start with small steps that blossom into a strategic push to bring the advantages of the Cloud to the rest of an organization. If you’re just looking to put a toe in the water, opt for a Hybrid Cloud model.
A Hybrid Cloud solution isn’t right for everyone, but the balance between security and flexibility makes it an ideal choice for many companies. If you’re interested in advancing your business with Cloud adoption, weigh the above considerations. A Hybrid Cloud approach might sound like a compromise, but it can come with significant advantages that help you achieve your goals.