Hybrid cloud is a business enabler, not a hindrance

We chat to Abiguo’s chief operating officer Ian Finlay to find out if the hybrid cloud is right for every businesses, and how it can help CIOs gain more control over their data, despite what many may believe.

Can you explain what ‘hybrid cloud’ is and the different benefits it gives businesses?

Hybrid cloud is simply a way of saying that your business can choose the best place to run each IT solution, whether it’s on equipment you own and operate, in a managed service provider, or in a commodity public cloud where you just buy capacity as you need it. Each of those has advantages and drawbacks: trading flexibility for cost, paying opex rather than capex, or giving up ease of visibility and auditing to be more responsive to business change.

Is it right for every business?

Many organisations are already operating a hybrid IT estate in one form or another. As it becomes easier to acquire multiple cloud services, visibility and control over data, and who has access to it, will continue to increase – posing security governance risks to enterprises. Hybrid cloud allows enterprises to mitigate the risk of unintentional exporting of data via unauthorised shadow IT, as it provides flexibility and options for each business unit to select a provider of choice – whether via public or private cloud.

What security issues should businesses be aware of when looking to implement a hybrid cloud solution?

Too many businesses assume that by embracing hybrid cloud they’ll lose control and governance over their business data, yet with the right technology in place, this needn’t be a worry. In reality, if managed correctly with the right tools, hybrid cloud actually provides more flexibility, while also being structured and secure. This actually enables CIOs to gain more control, while also assuring data governance. Hybrid cloud is a business enabler, not a hindrance as many CIOs may believe.

What new offerings are you focusing on at the moment?

Abiquo has recently launched the latest version of its cloud management platform – Abiquo 3.6. Many businesses still remain hesitant about cloud adoption, despite being aware of all the benefits it can provide. This is mainly due to the concerns around lack of speed, visibility and control required to rapidly migrate server workloads into the cloud. Abiquo’s new features, mobility and onboarding public cloud however, help to increase the simplicity in which businesses can move workloads between on-premises and public cloud environments, and in turn helps them to regain control of existing public cloud deployments.

What are your top tips for someone looking to work with a new cloud service provider?

When deciding to move to the cloud, the next most important decision is choosing the right cloud computing service provider, and there are some key considerations to think about when doing so.

Security is one of the largest considerations when choosing a cloud provider, as they will be managing and protecting your business-critical data. Not only is it important to review each cloud provider’s security measures, but also governance and compliance certifications. You should look for a provider with a security approach, which allows you to delegate authority, not just for managing tasks, but to also restrict users and service desk staff to parts of your physical infrastructure. You may also want to look for certifications such as ISO27001 and ISO20000 as a mark of quality and attention to detail.

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