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Organisations relying on cloud service providers for data protection

Organisations relying on cloud service providers for data protection

Johnny Karam, Vice President Emerging Market, Veritas

Veritas Technologies, a leader in multi-cloud data management, has announced the results of a global survey indicating that the majority of global organisations (56%) operate with a cloud-first mentality when it comes to deploying new applications and managing workloads. Only 1% of organisations reported that they will not be adopting cloud over the next two years. However, the study reveals that significant misconceptions exist on the responsibility for data management, with 69% of organisations wrongfully believing data protection, data privacy and compliance are the responsibility of the cloud service provider.

The Truth in Cloud study, commissioned by Veritas and conducted by Vanson Bourne, surveyed 1,200 global business and IT decision makers from across 13 countries. The study revealed that customers are embracing the multi-cloud as a key component of their business strategies. Within the survey, customers indicated they use a variety of cloud service providers, including public clouds and hosted private clouds. With respect to Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) specifically, over two-thirds (67%) of organisations state they use, or plan to use, two or more cloud providers. 42% say they are using, or plan to use, three or more cloud providers, with common goals of improving resiliency and data security as well as reducing capital expenditures (capex) and operating expenses (opex).

As customers embrace the cloud, the research explores three key areas of focus: misconceptions of data management in the public cloud, rise in multi-cloud adoption and future cloud trends.

Misconceptions of data management in the public cloud

Although organisations are adopting a multi-cloud approach, the research shows that when it comes to public clouds specifically, there are likely misconceptions around which party holds the ultimate responsibility for data management: the customer or the cloud provider.

Key findings include:

• More than eight in ten (83%) of organisations that use or plan to use IaaS believe that their cloud service provider takes care of protecting their data in the cloud.
• More than two-thirds (69%) of respondents believe they can place all responsibility for data protection, data privacy and compliance on cloud service providers.
• Over half (54%) of organisations believe it is the responsibility of the cloud service provider to securely transfer data between on-premises and cloud.
• Over half (51%) believe it is the responsibility of the cloud service provider to back up workloads in the cloud.
• More than one in two (55%) organisations also believe that application uptime is the responsibility of the cloud provider.

“Our legal teams reviewed contracts from multiple public cloud service providers to help Veritas understand what customers and cloud service providers are responsible for with respect to data management in the public cloud,” said Mike Palmer, Executive Vice President and Chief Product Officer, Veritas.

“Despite customers’ belief that cloud providers hold the responsibility of data management, cloud service provider contracts usually place data management responsibility on customers. Our research backed up our assumptions that the primary responsibility for data management lies with the customer,” Palmer added. “Veritas fully embraces a multi-cloud approach and is partnering with many leading cloud service providers to help customers manage and extract maximum value from their applications and data.”

Rise in multi-cloud adoption

The Truth in Cloud research also shows that on average, organisations are using, or plan to use, multiple cloud platforms, ranging from public clouds to hosted private clouds. However, many organisations continue to face challenges getting to the cloud, regardless of whether it is a public cloud or a hosted private cloud. The common barriers are:

• Complexity with cloud migration (37%)
• Legacy technology limitations (36%)
• Lack of in-house skills (38%)
• Lack of a clear strategy (32%)
• Data silos (27%)

Currently, 75% of organisations work with an IaaS public cloud provider and surprisingly, 16% of respondents say that they use, or plan to use, five or more cloud providers. Respondents stated that data privacy, security and compliance, workload performance and uptime are the top deciding factors impacting cloud provider selection.

“We are living in the age of multi-cloud, where organisations require a policy-driven data management strategy to protect valuable data assets across multiple data centres, public and hybrid clouds,” said Johnny Karam, Vice President Emerging Market at Veritas. “Data management in the cloud is critical to helping customers ensure compliance and protection of their data while extracting maximum value. Our opportunity is to communicate this to customers and provide the reassurance to help address concerns and realise the full potential of cloud.”

Future cloud trends

According to the study, IT spending on cloud technologies, including public cloud providers, is expected to rise from 12% in 2017 to 18% within the next two years. The trend is likely to continue and increase, as more than half (58%) of organisations that currently use one cloud provider indicate they plan to expand their portfolio across multiple cloud platforms.

“As more companies embrace a cloud-first mentality, the need to navigate the complexities of a multi-cloud world is critical. As with on-premises environments, customers should consider all aspects of data management as they journey to the cloud, from data protection, compliance readiness, and workload portability to business continuity and storage optimisation,” added Palmer.