With all the hype and hoopla surrounding cloud computing, you'd think the technology was enjoying the benefits of being the darling of enterprise computing.
Not true. Cloud computing has had a difficult row to hoe in finding its place, thanks to customer perceptions relating to security (it doesn't exist) and privacy (kiss it goodbye). Consequently, vendors and service providers alike have endured a tough existence getting customers to take a look at cloud computing, especially for mission-critical applications.
Now that seems to be changing. A recent survey by The Yankee Group noted that while cloud computing still has a ways to go before it becomes a ubiquitous technology, it is finding a place in the enterprise. The benefits of cost savings and flexibility-peppered with solid information about the reality of security and privacy in the cloud-are now outweighing customer perceptions. In fact, 57 percent of the survey respondents view cloud computing as an enabling technology. And that's a good thing.
Now, the argument over cloud computing is shifting toward the merits of private vs. public cloud computing. According to The Yankee Group's survey, enterprises have a much higher comfort level working in private clouds than in a public cloud environment. In fact, 70 percent of the survey respondents said a private cloud is their preferred approach to cloud computing. Public clouds, they believe, still hold a risk of data leaks and security breaches, despite the availability of technologies such as Amazon's Virtual Private Cloud.
There is the possibility that enterprises may never fully get over their fears about losing corporate data to the ether. And they have every right to be concerned. After all, it's basically their livelihood that companies are trusting to vendors in the cloud. It's up to the vendors to make a more compelling case beyond just the economics of cloud computing. After all, taking the leap never killed anyone; hitting the ground does. Vendors need to ensure their customers don't hit the ground.