The move to the cloud – what does it mean and what should you consider?
by Kevin Potter, vice president, Hosted & Managed Services, SunGard
The world of technology delivery is changing as both corporations and ﬁnancial service institutions increasingly look to consume both products and services from the cloud. Industry experts agree that long-term value can be derived from a service-led approach including faster application deployment, low-impact maintenance, and lower, transparent costs with no requirement for consumers to make a signiﬁcant investment in on-premise IT infrastructure.
This value however is not without risk, and organisations looking to consume cloud-based services must be conscious to extend their traditional security boundaries to ensure data is appropriately managed and secure, and that services being consumed go through a thorough risk assessment. In this emerging landscape, complete data lifecycle management should be core to the emergence of next generation IT strategies and drive tactical and strategic decision making. Moving forward, the maturity of vendors in this space should become a key differentiator in any assessment programme.
Securing your data, securing your business
Protecting sensitive ﬁnancial data is of paramount importance. Whilst hosted solutions are often ﬂexible and may offer many of the beneﬁts of cloud-based delivery including ease of access, minimal IT overhead and reduced total cost of ownership, they also need to be designed with all of the security and privacy controls that you’d expect from an on-premise deployment. SunGard’s hosted services customers use segregated environments and storage with private, encrypted connectivity to create a unique, end-to-end solution that encapsulates strict physical and logical security. Solutions are also offered with separate site disaster recovery and additional environments for testing and/or development requirements.
It is also important that services support staff have appropriate domain expertise and rigorous pre-employment security screening. When evaluating a provider, most companies will look for security controls and processes that are in line with industry best practice and have been assessed by independent audits.