6th March, 2020
The drive towards the use of cloud computing, cloud platforms and cloud data storage within most industries has been prompted by the need to reduce costs, consolidate data, reduce the business footprint and outsource the responsibilities of those assets to another party. This heavy move towards the adoption of cloud is shown by 81 percent of organisations using a multi-cloud strategy ‘flexera‘
Some assets can’t be pushed to the cloud either through legislation, the nature of those assets being critically sensitive, unease about the security measures, a need to access the data quickly or pure latency through geographical location, which must be physically maintained with high capacity, high rate links and infrastructure. This provides good prospects for expansion to the user, although there are some key and fundamental issues that everyone needs to be aware of.
One of the biggest challenges with the ever expanding real estate of business is “how do you identify what footprint you actually have?” With the outward expansion of a business comes the inevitable mergers and buyouts of other companies and the absorption of their data and infrastructure into your own. So how do you know if a network that was acquired from a merger in 2001 is accessing data contained on servers in your core network? Or that a cloud service has been providing analytical data to your company has stopped working? This challenge has a direct influence on a company’s profits and losses, if you are not making the best use of assets that you didn’t know existed how can it be leveraged for you ROI?
Another issue is rooted in the thought that, what if your company relies on the quick and efficient access, parsing and movement of data, what would happen if access and movement of that data were to be hampered in any way, for example due to bottlenecks in the infrastructure from a vital data source collecting let’s say seismic data to an analyst for pattern prediction or forecasting. Again this has direct effect on the company’s income and operational effectiveness by affecting the service or the vital function that you are providing.
Now for the true doom and gloom. Data in all and any of its forms is a very lucrative and important resource for any industry, but not only is it a prized asset for businesses but for the APT groups, hacktivists and Cyber criminals watching in the dark. With their aims to disrupt the movement and collection, exfiltrate or poison data, this can generate another hit in the pocket of businesses as well as the potential economic and geo-political ramifications to the wider world. All of this data needs to be secured and the infrastructure that the very platforms, applications and services are built upon defended. But how can you stop it if you can’t see it?
The only real way to know this kind of information (other than someone complaining that something is inexplicably not working) and to provide the defensive capabilities required is to have a solution that provides a true and deep visibility of your entire network infrastructure in all of its forms physical, hybrid and virtual and the movement of the raw data between them all and provide the capability to spot anomalies within the very wire or fibre of the network from layer 3 to layer 7. Without this ability you truly are flying blind in the darkness of the ether.