Cloud computing has come of age, both in terms of adoption — 60% of North American enterprises are on public cloud platforms — and evolution as it has been a decade since cloud computing has taken off. And, as with all things that come of age, cloud maturity is revealing both its challenges, as well as its inherent capabilities to resolve those problems. Prime amongst them being security, which is widely acknowledged as a top challenge for enterprise-wide cloud adoption.
In order to get more insight into cloud security and data protection trends, ESG (The Enterprise Strategy Group) surveyed 370 IT professionals at organizations in North America (U.S. and Canada) responsible for data protection for their organization. Here are the top three enterprise SaaS data protection trends from ESG’s research on Data Protection Cloud Strategies:
#1 SaaS data is incorrectly assumed to be secure
More than one-third of current and potential SaaS users believe that their SaaS provider is responsible for protecting data, according to survey respondents. Similarly, 37% believe their cloud-based applications do not need to be backed up. Even though the majority of respondents claim to be familiar with the data protection and recovery SLAs of their SaaS providers, they are unaware that if at all, in-built SaaS data protection only extends to data availability (versus data recoverability) for limited periods of time. While SaaS applications are extremely secure, they cannot protect you from mishaps on your end or the rare, but possible downtime.
#2 The major cause of SaaS data loss is human error
As Jay Heiser, research vice president at Gartner says, “CIOs must change their line of questioning from “Is the cloud secure?” to “Am I using the cloud securely?” The ESG research found that as far as top data loss causes for SaaS applications go, nearly one in three organizations cite error at the user’s end, whether accidental (20%) or intentional (12%). If we combine that with the misunderstanding concerning retention/deletion policies of the SaaS service provider (11%), more than half of the causes of data loss can be attributed to human error.
#3 Cost and scalability are driving organizations to cloud backup
With cloud adoption having matured, organizations are looking for answers within the cloud itself to resolve their data protection challenges. The vast majority of survey respondents classified cloud computing as helpful to their organization’s data protection strategy. More than three-quarters of current and potential cloud backup target service users are likely to replace their on-premises tape libraries with cloud-based ones.
The primary drivers that would lead—or has led—organizations to add cloud storage to an existing on-premises backup solution in lieu of a BaaS (Backend as a Service) solution, are precisely what cloud computing is renowned for: lower costs, flexibility, scalability, and high-performance.