Cloud computing seems to have become quite popular and hundreds of companies including some of the top ones seem to be quickly shifting to cloud storage. While there are many advantages that cloud computing has the process isn’t without its disadvantages. You have already heard about the benefits or advantages of cloud storages but are looking forward to know the negative side of this process here are some disadvantages of cloud storage:
1. Security and Privacy of Data
Where there is sensitive data there is a question of its privacy and security. Remember what happened a couple of months back when hackers gained access to 300 iCloud accounts and threatened Apple to delete their accounts if the company didn’t pay their demanded ransom. If you go back a couple of years there was a bigger breach in Code Spaces where by the time the company could get back control on their panel there was already a lot of damage done.
Although the cloud service companies boast of providing the most sophisticated ways of protecting your data the credibility needs to be sensibly considered.
Remember that cloud data can be accessed from anywhere on the internet which means that if there is a breach in data through hacking, an ex-employee or sharing of username and passwords then your data can be compromised. Remember IRS which had one of the most secure systems, the company was not spared and was compromised in 2015.
There are ways by which you can prevent security attacks such as limiting data access based on user context or adding intelligence to network protection and other security measures.
One of the most eminent disadvantages of cloud storage is downtime. We already discussed about cloud storage being internet based making it completely dependent on internet connection that you have. If your internet is offline then you are offline too. If your internet services has slow speed and suffers from regular outages then cloud storage is not your company’s cup of tea.
Companies such as Apple and DropBox also have suffered outages. If you wish to avoid all these problems ask your service provider to provide a guaranteed uptime of at least 99.55%.
Another in the list of disadvantages of cloud storage is additional costs for your company. If your company needs to transfer lots of data on a daily basis then transfer of any data to cloud is free but if you are making an outbound transfer of data then you need to pay a monthly fee on a monthly allowance per GB basis. Besides this, if you are downloading excessive data from your cloud data storage, then you would have to pay additional costs.
People here might argue that cloud storage doesn’t require any huge capital investment or infrastructure or licenses but there are costs involved in a different way. Customizing a cloud based software to match the needs of your business and work culture does require a lot of money. In case you are using custom developed in house software, get ready to invest a good amount of money because it cannot be moved to cloud without a re-write which is quite expensive.
Check the pricing of your cloud service provider before you subscribe for any plan. You would also have to consider the future growth and expansion of your company or business before you take on a particular cloud storage plan for your enterprise.
4. Inflexibility and Dependability
One more in the list of disadvantages of cloud storage is the inflexibility of some cloud apps. Remember that you are not going to be a permanent client of the company that you are choosing to take cloud services from. Data formats and applications of companies will not permit easy conversion or transfer to other systems. You could face problems while you are migrating to a different package. For instance to give you an example you wouldn’t be able to insert a document which is created in a different application into a Google Docs spreadsheet.
There are some vendors who will purposely lock-in clients with the usage of proprietary hardware/software so it is either not possible or costly to move to a different cloud vendor. Migration could also make your data vulnerable. Ensure that you are retaining the ownership of your data and this is mentioned clearly in the contract and the vendor confirms this clause, if you are moving to cloud storage.
Another thing which your contract should mention is that one can add or remove the number of cloud users and the data storage according to the requirement of the business.
5. Cloud Computing May not be Suitable for all Businesses
The fact that cloud storage is not for every type of business is absolutely true. Performance intensive applications like editing videos are not made for cloud. Any software that needs high-performance desktop computers like once used in graphic design are also not for cloud.
Think before you use all your applications and consider only some of them and if needed don’t use cloud at all.
Cloud computing might be gaining its popularity in the market but there are several points that should be considered before you take on a plan. The costs of IT management can surely be reduced but then is it worth it? Consider the above disadvantages of cloud storage before you pick a vendor. The most important thing is to look into the price plans and the details of the contract that the vendor is offering you before you subscribe. Also ensure that there is a good customer care service intact and the service providers can be reached immediately because you can’t afford to lose on your work for a long time.