By Reeve Samson, CIO, Secure Designs
Everywhere you turn, the advantages of cloud are being touted — to such an extent that you could be forgiven for thinking that on-premises solutions are obsolete. The cloud model is undeniably appealing given the difficulties of provisioning applications across distributed organizations and the need to streamline administration costs without decreasing productivity. But in fact what’s emerging as the new norm is a hybrid environment of on-premises and cloud solutions.
One of the key characteristics of ‘cloud’ applications are that they are entirely hosted off-site — in other words, the organization doesn’t own an appliance, server, or other endpoint dedicated to a particular function. However, the vast majority of companies who have moved much of their functions to a cloud model will still maintain local, premise-based network resources in the forms of critical data, extranets, and network segmentation for the foreseeable future. Moreover, adopting a cloud-based model is a relatively complex process, which means that large blocks of potential users — especially in the small and micro business segments — will exclude themselves from such solutions.
The On-Premises Collection Point
Because some of their critical data and business technology is hosted from the cloud, it is essential that companies have extremely reliable connectivity to enable efficient delivery of the data as needed. This is of critical importance to business continuity and sustainability. The on-premises network now becomes the collection point for a variety of data from disparate sources, subject to external influences, network speeds, and vulnerabilities. And this is why network security should be considered in a category of its own.
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