Credit Matters

Software Providers and Products

Question

Do we still need backup when we move to cloud computing?

Ask your providers and ready your contracts. Every provider offers different versions of backup and recovery from nothing to everything. Some cloud applications allow no backup at all so if they are down you have nothing. Select your providers carefully and seek expert advice along the way.

 

Question

Do small business owners understand the risks they take with data and information?

In Australia we under invest in data protection at a chronic level. Our “IT services” companies servicing the industry who have come from a PC background simply don’t get it. When we look at the methods used by large organisations to protect their data we realise that small business has to cut corners as proper protection is too expensive but it is important to learn what corners to cut without risking losing the business. By the way, when I say small business I mean anything under $100,000,000 turnover. We all under estimate our risk and exposure for fear of over spending or for lack of understanding the value of our data and the risk of losing it.

Question

Is cloud computing comparable in costs to offsite back up?

Yes when you shift to cloud solutions you will remove the need for offsite backup and so reduce infrastructure and labour costs. Your hidden costs of IT today are bigger than you think and cloud solutions are saving you more than you think while reducing risks you don’t realise you are taking. I am yet to meet a small business that has the backup they think they have. Nor have they valued their data highly enough. If you don’t believe me just walk over and turn off your server or PC and tell me what it costs you per hour, day or week.

Question

Is cloud computing for all business types?

Yes, just as soon as you define business types and cloud. When you realise Google is a cloud based tool for seeking information you know this horse has bolted.

Question

How can I be sure that if something happens to my provider, e.g. the New Zealand business closed down by the FBI, I can gain access to my information?

You can’t and off site copies can be complex so select your providers carefully. Know where the data is and how it is replicated.

Question

What are the risks to cloud computing?

Look at who is providing the cloud and ensure they are reputable, there are back yard servers being called cloud that will put your business at risk. Decide if it matters where the data sits, on shore or off shore. Read the contracts and understand where your data might end up.

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