Five Critical Questions to Ask Before Moving Data to the Cloud

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Data Location

In which region/country is my data stored?

Many cloud providers have data centers deployed across multiple regions. The physical distance between the user and the data center, even in high bandwidth connections, still matters because of network latency. High latency causes data transfers to time out and applications to break down, so one would always prefer to have the data stored in one's own region. Additionally, other considerations for companies that are spread out over multiple regions (e.g., North America and Europe) would require data to be replicated across multiple regions. This is also sometimes done for redundancy or disaster recovery purposes.

In the last few years, "the cloud" has become a household term, yet it's not always as well understood as you might think. Used in this popular singular form, "the cloud" suggests that there really is a single, nebulous entity where computing resources and endless data storage magically reside. Of course, the reality is that the cloud is a network of data centers, and within those, a network of servers and storage nodes. The real mystery begins when organizations start taking a closer look at the cloud's inner workings, asking such questions as: Where exactly does my cloud data live?

Understandably, many organizations are still wary of placing their sensitive data anywhere but in their own data centers. In that case, they know exactly where the data resides. However, there are reasons why enterprises – even in regulated industries – would want to use external cloud services – a move that doesn't necessarily mean they lose sight and control of their data. In this slideshow, CTERA outlines five questions organizations need to ask before moving data to the cloud.


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