7 Ways Cloud Computing Propels IT Security

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A spate of high-profile public and private cloud security breaches is helping to push advancements in security such as encryption. Here's a look at 7 ways the cloud may be the largest driver of IT security today.

To some, cloud computing and IT security do not intersect. The results are often disastrous. Considering the huge amount of press that cloud computing receives when breaches occur, it's easy to understand why they believe that. But if you look at IT security from a wider lens, you'll see that cloud computing technologies are actually helping to propel IT security at rates never seen before.

Indeed, some of the advancement of security mechanisms and architectures such as end-to-end encryption can be traced back to public and private cloud security breaches where sensitive data was stolen for profit or fun.

This brought the topic of encryption to the forefront of conversation in CIO circles around the globe. It also likely contributed to the recent skyrocketing adoption rates for encryption. According to a recent Ponemon Institute study that polled more than 5,000 IT and business managers from various parts of the world, 41% said that encryption has been adopted extensively in their organizations, an increase from 16% in 2005.

The fact goes to show that shortcomings of cloud computing -- especially from a security perspective -- are being addressed with better tools and processes.

[See 10 Cloud Jobs in Highest Demand Now.]

Other reasons why the cloud is driving security have to do with the flexible architecture infrastructure administrators now hold in their hands. Because cloud architectures are virtualized and driven by software, we suddenly have a vast amount of control over the design and deployment of an infrastructure. Add to it the wide availability of security tools with very low upfront costs, and you have a nearly bottomless security tool chest to pick and choose from.

Also, because of its distributed nature and fault-tolerant architecture, the cloud is becoming the de facto place to deploy security tools and services. The concept of private enterprise has long melted away. It now simply makes sense to start deploying the majority of security tools where we compute and where we store data the most.

Here are seven reasons why the cloud is the single largest driver of IT security today. Take a look and let us know how (or if) you think the cloud can take IT security to the next level.

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