Tackling the myths of Cloud computing

In some fields of human endeavour, innovation is a given. Nearly 2,000 years ago, Pliny the Elder made his famous remark that “ex Africa semper aliquid novi” (“out of Africa there is always something new”). He was writing about his culture’s southward expansion, but he might have been talking about computing.

The 60 or 70 year history of business IT has been marked by constant upheaval. There are plenty of minor upsets – remember your first thin client, or the time you realised that a USB stick would enable you to carry a year’s work in your shirt pocket? But there are also major changes every decade or two.

There was the 60s culture shock as computer pros brought their terminals and mainframes into the accounts departments. Then, in the early 80s, there was a lesser revolution as young turks equipped with desktop PCs elbowed the old data processing departments aside. 10 years later, the arrival of the internet brought the era of standalone computing to an end. Fast forward 15 years, and software began its steady migration off the desktop. The age of Cloud computing had arrived… and Host100 found its milieu.

For anyone who remembers installing software from CD-ROMs and floppies, Microsoft’s decision to port Office to the Cloud is a definitive sign that Things Have Changed. Those with shorter memories may need more convincing.

Here, based on conversations with our clients, are the 5 commonest myths about the Cloud… and the reasons that they shouldn’t be taken seriously.

“Cloud computing is just a fad”

This one’s easily dealt with. According to Wikipedia, Amazon introduced its web services, now the accepted gold standard for online computing resources, 15 years ago. It has grown its revenues in every one of the intervening years, from a few tens of millions in 2009 to an astonishing $25bn in 2018.

Cloud computing is here to stay.

“Cloud computing makes your data vulnerable”

Cloud computing generally requires data uploading. You may keep a local copy, but you will no longer be solely responsible for backups and recovery procedures. Surely your data could be blown away on a breeze?

Cloud storage is actually more robust than relying on local media. You may not actually see the storage medium, but the Cloud version of your data is held in a remote data centre with an elaborate backup policy. It’s unlikely to become the victim of a brownout or a lightning strike.

“Cloud computing is unreliable”

Your software and your data live on the internet. If your network goes down, you’re scuppered… aren’t you?

Across the three decades since the arrival of the commercial internet, access has steadily improved. UK government statistics show that 93% of households now have internet access, and two-thirds of us can access the internet from mobile devices, making a genuine network blackout is a very rare event.

It’s smart to have a backup plan for such eventualities, but you shouldn’t base your entire IT policy on it.

“The Cloud is inherently insecure”

The Cloud is as secure as you want it to be. The basic architecture of the internet gives you a high degree of security because it uses your computer hardware to encode elements of your data exchanges. But a good Cloud solution should allow you to add extra layers of security.

If you don’t like Provider A’s offer, check out what Provider B. has to say! At HOST100, we pride ourselves on rock-solid security that’s easy to configure.

“Migrating to the Cloud is expensive”

In-house computer resources are expensive. You’ll need to budget for maintenance, energy, hardware, software licenses, storage media and connectivity, not to mention your own management time.

Study after study has shown that Cloud computing significantly reduces IT costs.

HOST100 has helped many clients move their computer resources into the Cloud. If you’d like to discuss doing likewise, we’d love to talk to you!