Does Every Business Cloud Always Have a Silver Lining?

September 25, 2012 by Jonathan Watkins
Does Every Business Cloud Always Have a Silver Lining?
Cloud computing has arrived and cemented its place in the world of web hosting giving businesses no choice but to analyze its offerings and contemplate adopting the solution. Low costs and any easy startup are luring customers in their thousands, but there have inevitably been some criticisms and concerns voiced that urge users to consider a number of factors before investing in the phenomenon.

Should these worries really put businesses off though? A widely believed opinion is that large corporations have the finance to adapt their cloud solutions to meet their needs and requirements but for small to medium enterprises (SMEs) the cloud can sometimes bring a storm. But ultimately every situation is different, so it is important to investigate what cloud computing can do for your business, taking into account your budget, resource needs and security requirements.

Security management, data privacy and performance are just a number of the cloud’s functions that have been called into question, causing some businesses to shift back to self-hosted solutions from the hype-surrounded cloud.

For SMEs it is wise to consider the pros and cons before opting for the solution simply because larger businesses are doing so. The capital investment required to employ cloud hosting is a substantial attraction, as is the low level of maintenance required. Also, the cloud allows smaller companies access to resources they would not receive from other hosting solutions. These are great attributes for a smaller company, but as with most services and solutions there are reported drawbacks and concerns.

Security is a priority for every business, as problems related to this can cause implications to reputations, financial problems and invite legal proceedings. A common concern for those considering the cloud is that hackers may be able to access data. Ultimately it will be on the business to ensure its provider has sufficient security in place along with taking measure to keep data secure yourself such as hardware protection.

Through using a cloud provider, you also won't have control of how your data is backed up or where it is stored, so remember to take this into account before opting for the solution. While these security problems have a possibility of occurring, overall, it is however, unlikely that you'll experience them and remember that no hosting solution is perfect, but this one is getting pretty close, especially with so many developments occurring on a regular basis.

A number of incidents have also seen services such as Netflix and Instagram go offline for hours. These have been publicised in the media due to their vast number of users, however what won't make the headlines is a single company's site shutting down due to problems with cloud hosting. If a business' website suffers an offline period then it will be down to the provider to fix the problem, which could take a substantial amount of time depending on where the website is in the pecking order, so do consider this if this is one of your main requirements.

Downtime and security issues may be a concern for businesses but overall, these are minor drawbacks and certainly don't counter the advantages of a low capital investment. The "ifs" and "buts" associated with the cloud can be applied to any form of web hosting. It is important to ensure your provider offers resources and services that suit your business needs.

About the author

Jonathan is a senior writer covering web hosting and tech news on Jonathan graduated from the University of Brighton with a BA (Hons) in Journalism and since then has been working for various websites, magazines and newspapers.

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