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Cloud Storage Problems, The Dark Side of the Cloud

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Cloud Storage Problems Introduction

What would be your biggest concerns with giving your private and confidential data to someone else to look after? Security an reliability, correct?

Well you’re not alone, the two biggest concerns everyone has with cloud storage are also security and reliability. No one is going to be silly enough (at least I hope not) to entrust their data to a third party without a cast iron guarantee that their data is secure and that they will be capable of accessing their data on demand.

Delivering robust yet high performing storage in the cloud has been one of the greatest hardware and software challenges in the explosion of cloud computing.

  • Poor storage performance from many leading cloud suppliers is one of the most cited complaints by users.

What Cloud Storage is Not

Cloud storage is not something weather related. Although cloud storage sounds like it has something to do with the weather, its really refers to saving data to an off-site storage system maintained by a third party.

What is Cloud Storage?

Cloud storage is a service model in which data is maintained, managed and backed up remotely and made available to users over a network (typically the Internet). There are three main cloud storage models:

  • The Public Cloud Model. This is the most common implementation. It is essentially storage capacity accessed through the internet or a wide area network (WAN) connection, and purchased on an as-needed basis.
  • The Private Cloud Model. Private cloud or corporate cloud storage services provide a dedicated (usually proprietary) environment protected behind an organization’s firewall.
  • Hybrid Cloud Model. Hybrid cloud storage is a combination of the private cloud and public cloud infrastructure.

So instead of storing data on an external hard drive for example, you save it to a remote database with the Internet providing the means of data transfer.

Cloud Storage Security

To secure your data, most cloud systems use a techniques which include:

  • Encryption. Only users with the encryption key can access the data.
  • Authentication. Standard authentication processes requiring a user name and password.
  • Authorization. Many corporations have multi-level authorization for their employees.

Even though cloud storage companies invest a lot of money, time and effort to limit the possibility of data theft or corruption you should still be concerned about their systems vulnerability before choosing your companies cloud storage solution.

  • If hackers accessed their system through electronic back doors, would your data be safe?
  • Could insurgents steal the hard drives on which your data is stored?
  • Could a disgruntled or ex employee destroy data or even the hard drives?
  • Is you data safe against fire, flood, storm, the government, invading aliens?

Cloud Storage Reliability

The other concern, reliability, is just as important as security. An unstable cloud storage system, be it the hardware, software or the company itself, is a liability.

  • No one wants to save data to a failure prone system.
  • You cannot put your trust in a company that isn’t financially stable.

While most cloud storage systems try to address this concern through redundancy techniques, there’s still the possibility that an entire system/company could crash and leave clients with no way to access their saved data.

As cloud storage companies live and die by their reputations. It’s in each company’s best interests to provide the most secure and reliable service possible.

  • Any company which cannot meet a clients expectations doesn’t deserve to succeed.

Cloud Storage Problems Conclusion

Well, I hope you found something useful and enjoyed this article, Cloud Storage Problems. For cloud storage and backup solutions see my article:

Also, don’t forget to let me have your thoughts on cloud storage in the comment box below. See you soon.

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