Big Data via Shared Services – Safer in the Cloud

Data integrity, or accuracy, and security have become big issues in the news as of late. We’ve all heard about data breaches into the files of several large banks and retailers as hackers infiltrate firewalls and data repositories – stealing personal information for use or resale. Gathering, collecting, storing and analyzing information is becoming an ever-increasingly large task and market – $125 billion in 2015 according to Gil Press’ Forbes article ‘6 Predictions For The $125 Billion Big Data Analytics Market in 2015.’

And Big Data continues to grow as featured in another Forbes article by Louis Columbus, updating the market situation titled ‘2015 Big Data Market Update,’ which highlights increased use by marketing, IT and HR departments. And right along with that growth is the increasing risk of confidential business information walking out the door via file sharing services. “Organizations need to give their employees a secure way of sharing files or every mobile device will continue to be a potential sieve for confidential data,” says Yorgen Edholm, CEO of data security firm Accellion in ‘Leaky Buckets: The IT Risks From File-Sharing Services.’

Protecting data is of utmost importance to firms providing solutions in the Shared Services arena. Firms employing SaaS/Cloud Computing methodologies for their developmental architecture and delivery models have several advantages they offer their customers including cost savings through reduced support and hardware needs and increased levels of sharing and collaboration; but perhaps the most important of these is increased data security.

In his recent column, ‘Cloud Security: 6 Steps for Keeping Your Data Safe,’ Paul Gillin says on, “Cloud service providers have little choice but to deliver world-class security. Without it they can’t compete for lucrative business from big customers in industries like financial services and healthcare. Cloud companies also can apply economies of scale. Because their security investments benefit all of their customers, they can amortize their costs more efficiently. Patches and updates can also be applied across all of their customers, making each individual account more secure.”

“These services are typically designed against a model that forces them to address widely differing use cases,” said Rob Enderle, founder of the analyst firm Enderle Group. “Finally, the reality is that businesses are far more vulnerable to internal threats than external ones. Forrester Research reported that 25% of security breaches are caused by malicious insiders and an additional 36% by employee mistakes. Lax password policies, phishing, and social engineering will compromise any IT system, regardless of where it is located,” adds Gillin. “As we saw with the Snowden and Sony breaches, even the most secure on-premise solution is vulnerable to bad security practices,” Enderle said.