When the ransomware attack WannaCry hit last year, it shook the world and brought a number of established institutions to their knees. If you watched the news unfold thinking, ‘That’ll never happen to my business’, you probably aren’t alone.
But you’re also probably wrong.
The truth is, the odds aren’t in your favor. Malware attacks like ransomware target businesses of all sizes, at random, and they’re on the rise. What’s more, growing businesses like yours are both more likely to fall victim to these attacks and less likely to recover quickly.
It may seem as if moving your IT to the cloud is the worst thing that you can do under these circumstances, but it’s actually one of the smartest moves that you can make.
Not only is the cloud a flexible and cost-effective option, it also offers bank-grade security that your business simply cannot match on its own.
1. You’re not a security expert (and you don’t want to be one)
You can’t possibly keep up with the deluge of new IT security threats that are emerging on a daily basis – you’re too busy running your business.
Cloud service providers however, have both the resources and expertise needed to keep pace with this changing threat landscape. They also see a huge range of vulnerabilities and threats because they’re protecting so many businesses. This means they can spot issues that may affect your business long before you can.
More importantly, when they identify a potential threat they don’t just protect one customer, they ensure everyone is protected. This means that when you move to the cloud, your IT security improves rapidly and automatically.
2. You can’t keep watch around the clock
To ensure that your business is secure, you need to monitor and manage your IT security around the clock. This demands significant resources and, of course, budget.
Few growing businesses can spare either.
IT service providers (like us) however, monitor and manage their security perimeter 24x7x365. If an attack or breach occurs, they have the resources to react immediately, neutralize the threat and limit exposure.
They also use 256-bit encryption to protect data in transit and in storage. This means that even if sensitive information is intercepted, it can’t be read. This is the strongest form of encryption available and it’s highly effective.
With your IT in the cloud, you’re instantly protected by this level of security. What’s more, you’re only paying one predictable per user, per month price for all of it.
3. You can’t keep up with compliance
Complying with regulations such as Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) and the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) can be a complex and expensive process. Meeting best practice standards is just the start, you also need to stay on top of the regulations.
This may be a challenge for you, but IT service providers already have the physical infrastructure and technical expertise to implement solutions that comply. What’s more, they can roll them out quickly and easily.
By moving your business to the cloud, you automatically achieve compliance with these regulations. This means that you can focus on more important matters while your provider handles the annual audits.
4. You don’t have a business continuity plan
Protecting your business against a breach is one thing. But you also need to prepare for the other doomsday scenario – network downtime.
If your IT is on-premises, the resilience of your network is only as good as the robustness of your server. If this is compromised, damaged or destroyed, your system goes down.
Cloud service providers on the other hand, don’t rely on just one server. They have numerous back-up systems both on-site and off-site, all of which are protected by the highest standard of network and physical security. If one server goes down, they simply switch to another.
This flexibility gives you the opportunity to ‘virtualize’ your IT in the cloud. You can create copies of your files, applications and desktops and store the ‘true version’ in a separate, highly-secure environment.
This means that even if the worst happens, you can ‘spin-up’ everything you need in an instant to ensure that your business keeps rolling.
Your journey to the cloud
Moving your IT storage, applications and desktops to the cloud enables you to benefit from bank-grade security without having to compromise on accessibility or price. It takes the heavy lifting away from you and leaves you more secure than you’d be on your own.
But these are just a few of the advantages of embracing the cloud. Read our ‘Journey to the cloud’ guide to find out how else it can help your business.