Posted by Adrienne Hall, general manager, Trustworthy Computing

Business leaders need information, tools and research to understand if adopting the cloud can deliver advantages lower IT costs, increased efficiencies, and greater flexibility.   They’re also reviewing whether the integration of cloud services into their overall IT roadmap helps address cybersecurity and privacy concerns.

Recent Wall Street Journal and Forbes news reported CIOs sentiment as follows: 

  • CIOs are being understandably detailed in their review of SLAs with cloud providers to ensure privacy and security concerns are being addressed.
  • Cloud skeptical CIOs are running low-risk pilots to prevent vendor lock-in and evaluate portability.
  • CIOs are seeking out vendors who provide insight and analysis, along with hard data, on the benefits of cloud adoption. 

For business leaders who are evaluating cloud security and privacy, I recommend a few resources to help inform decisions. The US-CERT’s recent Cybersecurity Questions for CEOs paper and the Cloud Security Alliance’s (CSA) Critical Areas of Focus in Cloud Computing guidance provides a road map with a focus on security to adopting cloud services. I also recommend a perusal of the CSA’s Security, Trust & Assurance Registry (STAR) which documents the security controls provided by various cloud computing offerings, thereby helping business leaders assess the security of cloud providers they currently use or are considering contracting. Microsoft cloud services are in the STAR to ensure customers have the information they need to assess security and privacy capabilities.

Organizations are utilizing Microsoft Office 365 for cloud based email, calendaring, collaboration, and conferencing to improve communication and collaboration. Enterprise cloud customers are increasing the delivery of new services to their business; enhancing server security and availability; and reducing network and server fixed costs.

Movement to the cloud represents an adaptive progression of IT strategy over time.