Saturday, 07th December 2019
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Keeping Pace in a Cloud-First World

Research suggests that 7 out of 10 businesses are moving to the cloud. And it’s hardly a surprise. Cloud offers both the flexibility and scalability to manage huge workloads from dispersed locations around the world. The exponential growth of managed service providers (MSPs) – companies that remotely manage a customer’s IT infrastructure and/or their end user systems – has been pivotal in helping cloud computing become the business-critical asset it is today, easing the strain on businesses looking for the most agile IT solutions. By Mark Anderson, Senior Director of Global Solutions Enablement EMEA at Equinix.

Despite this, there is still a concern among IT professionals about cloud’s security risks. High profile data breaches, such as the now infamous iCloud hacks, have caused much speculation around the safety of data stored in the cloud. But what measures can be taken to mitigate this risk? And how can companies develop and deploy cloud architectures that are resilient to cyber-attacks?

Multi-cloud or Hybrid-cloud. Which one is right for me?

Cloud spending is set to reach approximately £166.2 billion by the end of 2019 as companies embrace the business-critical agility, scalability and efficiency it offers. The Global Interconnection Index Vol.2, a market study published by Equinix, predicts that the direct interconnection between enterprises with cloud and IT providers is expected to grow at a 98% CAGR across Europe to 254 Tbps by 2021. A key driver of this growth will be enterprises moving to both multi-cloud and hybrid cloud strategies.

Different cloud service providers have different areas of expertise – so companies using a single cloud provider tend to find their needs serviced well in some sectors, and under-serviced in others. Multi-cloud solutions, which are primarily available in co-location data centres where these clouds are housed, allow companies to select the cloud providers they want to have access to. This gives enterprises the freedom to tailor their cloud architecture, so it directly fits their business needs. Multi-cloud architectures also boost an enterprises cloud security offering too. A robust multi-cloud strategy reduces the possibility of cyber-attacks, as cloud services do not sit in one location.

Hybrid cloud is another service that is being adopted by enterprises that want to gain a competitive advantage. Agile businesses are now architecting their cloud in a way that allows them to flexibly move frequently used workloads to and from public clouds, while storing archived data that is less often used in a private cloud. Building a private cloud within the walls of a data centre is extremely secure, as it bypasses the public internet.

The idea of moving entire businesses data to a new cloud architecture might sound like a daunting task, but it is easier than you might think. Having open and honest conversations about your enterprise IT needs with your MSPs will help to streamline the operation and choose an option that works best for your business.

At your Service

The global shift towards the ‘anything-as-a-service’ model is only going to exacerbate the already high levels of cloud adoption. Cloud native applications such as Office 365 and NetSuite are now staple business tools that store highly sensitive data. Bypassing the public internet helps to increase the level of security drastically, eliminating many of the issues that keep CEOs, CTOs and COOs awake at night.

The Equinix Cloud Exchange allows companies to interconnect with multiple cloud providers directly; dramatically lowering the risks posed by the public internet. By using direct interconnection strategies to optimise cloud migration, enterprises will not only decrease the likelihood of a cyber breach, but also ensure sensitive data is kept safe, whilst still increasing the performance of backup and recovery process over private, high-speed, low-latency connections. It also allows businesses with a global footprint to access workloads from dispersed offices, anywhere in the world.

A Safer Solution

Cloud is no longer a differentiator but a core business enabler. But increasing regulatory compliance, the proliferation of IoT devices and massive growth in big data are adding additional layers of complexity, increasing the need for safe, secure and robust cloud architectures that can be accessed in real time. Enterprises operating in the era of interconnection must keep pace with the continually evolving digital landscape to ensure they are not left behind. By keeping a strong and trusted relationship with their MSPs, companies will negate this risk through having access to the latest technology and the most cutting-edge solutions.


By Darren Watkins, managing director for VIRTUS Data Centres.
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