Monday, February 3, 2014

Cloud Computing Services

Dropbox is one of the most popular cloud computing services. In the article from the, Dropbox was refuting claims that their cloud service had been hacked and attributed the problems to "routine internal maintenance." 'The cloud-storage service went offline on Friday evening for three hours. Just moments before the outage, though, the hacker group The 1775 Sec took to Twitter to state that they were responsible for downing the Dropbox website.' Vulnerability to hackers is an ongoing issue for all cloud computing services. Dropbox’s immediate response to the service issue was the correct thing to do as it calmed the fears of their customers and lessened the impact of the supposed hacker’s intent and message.
Cloud computing is the new go-to in the information technology industry. Large companies and small companies are adapting the use of these cloud services. Popular cloud services like Google Drive, Dropbox, and iCloud are common with major corporations as well as individual users.
The greatest advantage of implementing the cloud to a company is that you have a company that specializes in data storage taking care of your data. A company can spend their time and resources on what they do best, running their company and not worrying about back office tasks such as data storage.  Since all of the data is stored on the cloud, backing it up is much easier than information that is stored on a physical device at the company’s location. Cloud computing is very cost efficient. Lowering costs is something every company looks to do in all departments, implementing cloud computing can drastically lower a company’s IT expenses. Cloud data storage is beneficial in that information can be accessed anywhere, anytime. Most, if not all, of a company’s data is stored on multiple servers across the country or even multiple countries. This provides multiple backups in case a data center suffers a service interruption. The cost for a company to provide the same data storage services for itself would almost always be more than utilizing a cloud services company. 
Security is obviously the largest issue with cloud computing. Since the cloud is solely Internet based, it makes it very susceptible to hackers. A company utilizing cloud data storage is totally dependent on its data storage vendor to keep its data secure. Selecting the most reliable data storage vendor is critical to maintaining company operations. Technical issues are a part of everyday business and when selecting a data storage vendor, it is important to have a service level agreement that will ensure minimal downtime in the case of unplanned downtime. A company should review the internal processes a data storage vendor utilizes when a technical problem occurs. As companies and individuals gain more trust in the security of their data in the cloud, the use of cloud data storage has increased.  A significant challenge for the cloud data storage vendors is security and the unknown intentions of hackers trying to interrupt the safety of cloud computing.
 Companies such as Dropbox can master data storage, backups and retrieval but will face an ongoing challenge to master making their cloud services secure and safe from hackers. Responding quickly to hackers public tweets will downplay their significance in addition to reviewing internal controls to ensure that their systems are secure.

Opam, Kawme. "Dropbox Website Goes Down, Hackers Claim Responsibility (update)."The Verge. N.p., 10 Jan. 2014. Web.

Viswanathan, Priya. "Cloud Computing – Is It Really All That Beneficial?" Mobile 

Devices. N.p., n.d. Web. 

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