Cloud: No Longer the Wild West

The cloud still looks like the Wild West to many Feds– unsettled and lawless.

Keep your head down. Watch your back.

Concerns about data security – primarily data loss and data breaches – represent their major worries. Giving up control of data is a big step for agencies and not one Feds take lightly. They want to ensure that their data will be secure in the cloud and portable in case they want to saddle up and switch cloud service providers later.

Agencies also are wary of the cloud environment because they don’t have full visibility once they let go of the data. Since they can’t see under the covers, they don’t know the hardware their cloud service provider uses or the underlying security in place to protect data and networks.

It’s a leap of faith.

Public and hybrid clouds are the main culprits. But there are sheriffs in town, reliable technology solutions to give agencies the tools they need to keep track of data – and keep the peace.

Secure multi-tenancy goes a long way toward addressing the major concerns agencies have expressed. Since multiple tenants can use space in the same public cloud -- lots of people in one teepee – secure multi-tenancy is a commonsense solution. It provides cloud users with clear, unimpeded visibility of their slice of the cloud. It also gives cloud users an opportunity to ensure that their cloud has a trusted hardware stack – with all the elements in the stack working as they should.

Migrating to the cloud is a big step for many agencies, but it shouldn’t be a step into the unknown.

Agencies don’t want to feel like they’re heading into the Wild West when they journey to the cloud. They want cloud security solutions that make them feel at home.

If you want to stay involved, follow the conversation about cloud computing at MeriTalk’s Cloud Computing Exchange http://meritalk.com/ccx and the Cloud Computing Caucus Advisory Group http://cloudcomputingcaucus.org/

Lee Vorthman, Chief Technology Officer, Federal and Civilian Agencies, NetApp U.S. Public Sector