For instance, what happens if you store sensitive customer data in the cloud and someone breaches it? Do you really think it matters what your SLA says? Who will your customers hold responsible?
You, thats who.
Earlier this month a security breach at AT&T exposed the email addresses of more than 100,000 iPad users. Most customers blamed Apple, but the problem was with AT&Ts cloud service.
The breach was a minor one. After all, most peoples email addresses have been farmed by spammers many times over. However, had the leaked information been credit card or personal information, Apple would have had a problem that made the iPhone 4 antenna problems seem trivial.
You can never abdicate responsibility to a service provider, Stroud said. The cloud provider may be a custodian of your information, but the reality is that it is your reputation that will suffer if something goes wrong.
What happens if your cloud provider fails? The collapse of cloud startup Coghead last year shows just how dangerous skimping on due diligence can be. Coghead wooed customers with low prices. Then, when it ran out of money and failed to raise additional VC capital, it gave its customers a few short weeks to get their data off of its systems.
It could have been worse. What happens if your cloud provider shuts down with no notice? What happens if disgruntled employees smuggle servers out the back door after they get their pink slips? What happens if the local sheriff chains up the building under order from a bankruptcy judge?
If you dont do your due diligence, you might find out.
If youre dealing with a large, established cloud provider, at least you have a single neck to choke if something goes wrong, and you can bet that bad press will motivate them to solve the problem. With smaller vendors, you might be on your own.
If your application performs poorly, your customers wont blame the cloud provider, they will blame you. There will be mistakes in your application. There always are, Sebastian said. With the proper performance management and monitoring tools in place, youll have a better chance of catching those mistakes before they become a disaster.
One of the ways around the issues of security and control that make some businesses wary of cloud computing is to build a private cloud -- one that remains within the corporate firewall and is wholly controlled internally. Private clouds also increase the agility of IT an organization's IT infrastructure and make it easier to roll out new technology projects. Download this eBook to get the facts behind the private cloud and learn how your organization can get started.