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June 29, 2011

Interoperability a greater challenge than security in cloud computing adoption

Improved tools from cloud firms for IT control over security and reliability may bring in IT managers confidence, say IEEE experts

By CBR Staff Writer

Cloud computing interoperability and data portability is a greater concern than security in the adoption of cloud services, according to Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

Experts from IEEE have said that cloud services firms may reassure IT managers by providing improved tools for IT control over security and reliability, as well as security guarantees.

To integrate public cloud networks that are configured as closed systems, industry standards must be developed to help cloud service providers design interoperable platforms and enable data portability.

IEEE CIO Alexander Pasik said to achieve the economies of scale that will make cloud computing successful, common platforms are needed to ensure users can easily navigate between services and applications regardless of where they’re coming from, and enable organisations to more cost-effectively transition their IT systems to a services-oriented model.

IEEE fellow Elisa Bertino said security in the cloud is no different than security issues that impact on-premises networks.

"Organisations are not exposing themselves to greater security risks by moving data to the cloud. In fact, an organization’s data is likely to be more secure in the cloud because the vendor is a technology specialist whose business model is built on data protection," he added.

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IEEE member and former global head of Data Centres at BT in the United Kingdom Steve O’Donnell said there’s a lack of enterprise tools that enable management of security and availability in the cloud in the same way as in a data center.

"Enterprises believe their own data centers are secure and available, and want to own the management of cloud security and availability rather than outsourcing it to a third party," O’Donnell said.

According to industry research firm International Data Corporation (IDC), revenue from public cloud computing services is expected to reach $55.5bn by 2014, up from $16bn in 2009.

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