If you haven’t already embraced the Cloud, what’s holding you back Canada? We have proof that Canadians want to adopt the cloud but have been hesitant due to a number of reasons. Because there are 2 sides to every story, we decided to go-ahead and compile a list of the top 5 common objections (ahem excuses…) for not moving to the Cloud and counteract that with our top 5 benefits of why 2016 is the year you really should move to the Cloud!
Objection 1: Data needs to remain in Canada for Compliance. Regulation requires personal identifiable information (PII) data to remain in Canada. This regulation only applies to public sector organisations in Newfoundland and British Columbia and some specific healthcare related entities. Nevertheless there is an overwhelming sentimentality who believe that they must host their data in Canada.
Benefit 1: Incase you missed the BIG news that was announced on January 13, AWS is launching a Region in Canada! The Region will consists of multiple data centres within 20 miles of each other to cover high availability and redundancy. What does this mean for your concerns regarding Data residency? Well it means you don’t have any more excuses with the new Canada-Montréal data centers being launched later this year!
Objection 2: Data Privacy. Many Canadians are rightfully concerned about their privacy. Putting it mildly. They do not want the US Government’s hands on their banking, health records or personal information. If data is hosted in the US, the Patriot Act allows the US Government to request information from any US based host provider without a warrant, based on the suspicion of a national threat or terrorist activities.
Benefit 2: This.Is.Canada! 🙂 In Canada, we have Federal and Provincial privacy laws which protect citizens from certain abuses of their data. By hosting your data in Canada you are automatically protected by these laws. Even though AWS is a US based organisation, in jurisdictions outside the US they form legal entities which are governed by these laws whereby any request for information must go through that country’s courts of law. In addition AWS are in a position to fight for their customers rights in this regard and will do so as evidenced in this AWS security blog. By moving your data to the Canada-Montreal AWS Region, you will get the double benefit of AWS serious privacy stance as well as their protection.
Objection 3: Security. Is the public cloud really secure? Will our data, applications and systems be safe from hacks or malicious attacks? These are some of the concerns shared by many Canadian companies.
Benefit 3: Would you rather have thousands of the best paranoid security engineers working to protect your data, or maybe one or a few who do their best to keep up with the rapid changes your security posture demands. The discussion recently has shifted to the cloud being more secure than on-premise or co-location, see IDC latest report. To add, your data centre is aging and becoming more complex, creating more vulnerabilities. AWS is by far the leader in security on the cloud with industry-recognized certifications and audits: PCI, ISO 27001, FISMA Moderate, FedRAMP, HIPAA, and SOC 1, SOC 2 etc, see full list here. AWS services and data centers also have multiple layers of operational and physical security to ensure the integrity and safety of your data, where you can shift a large portion of security management burden to an infrastructure environment designed and managed to the specification of the world’s most security sensitive organizations, yes AWS hosts the CIA or NSA data. While AWS provides intense security coverage, it is done with understanding that security is a shared responsibility. There are many tools and means in which enterprises can make their public cloud initiative more secure. While these tools and services exist, they aren’t always used the proper way, or even used at all. One effective way is to have a trusted advisor like TriNimbus, who analyzes your environment and applications, understands your requirements and creates customized security aware architecture appropriate for your scale and budget.
Objection 4: Costs.The Cloud is sometimes viewed as an outsourced commodity data center with escalating costs, hence making it seem like an expensive operating option. Also, most companies fear the operating billing process and consider it to be a surprise that is not necessarily pleasant.
Benefit 4: The real benefit of the cloud is the overall value it provides primarily through its pay-as-you-go approach compared to traditional upfront IT solutions. It is proven that the TCO is lower on the cloud with the great example of Zynga saving $100MM moving back to AWS as well as GE and Capital One migrating to AWS. You can take advantage of the many scalable usage based resources and can effectively eliminate many of the redundant tasks you find in traditional IT. You can also reserve particular services paying upfront for those for period of 1 or 3 years. However, if kept unchecked, costs in the Cloud can also add up quickly and you want to ensure you have the appropriate architecture, controls and tools in place to manage and report on your environments ongoing cost, as well as the experience and expertise to understand how to command the AWS platform.
Objection 5: Dark Hole Mindset (Server Huggers). Many people are still uncomfortable with any concept that is not in front of their eyes in a physical form like a server room. This may be fear of the unknown or change or unwillingness to learn something new. They view the Cloud as a dark hole of sorts and would rather take on the up-front costs of owning expensive heavy hardware equipment rather than invest in a service that can spin up hundreds or thousands of servers in minutes and deliver results faster while allowing your IT teams to focus more on innovation.
Benefit 5: The Cloud is the New Normal: Like history has shown us time and time again, you either adapt to change and embrace it or be left behind. Any of the benefits mentioned above should convince you that 2016 is most definitely the year of the Canadian Cloud and jumping on-board with a mega cloud stalwart like AWS is a safe and most certainly winning bet – even if you are not the betting kind!