A host of possibilities

22/12/2014

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A host of possibilities

Restructuring a business around a cloud computing model does not come without problems. Essentially, the cloud allows companies to outsource information holding. By adopting a cloud computing model, companies pass on the responsibility for securing and maintaining that information to a third party. Hence, trust and privacy issues become highly important.

Multi-tenancy and multi-instance are two types of software architecture used in cloud computing. Multi-tenancy describes a platform that can be accessed by several entities. The information uploaded and program presets are unique to each subscription, but all clients access the same cloud. The concern here is whether one user can manage to access information that belongs to another user of the same cloud. For instance, messages such as failure-to-access alerts or error messages can return private information as part of the failure message. In contrast, multi-instance software is a cloud accessed by only one entity. The industry is currently in the phase of ironing out security concerns because it is unclear where the data is held and whether the privacy laws applicable in that jurisdiction would be the same as those in the client’s location.

Different countries have different marketing and privacy regulations, so businesses that are unaware of these variations might unexpectedly find that their data is being used for marketing or anticompetitive purposes. Ultimately, having truly secure physical servers and impenetrable firewalls, and convincing potential client of this, are the largest challenges to success in the industry.

Another key area of growth over the past five years has been the web-hosting market. The growing importance of websites has increased the number of specialist operators offering website services to both the personal and business markets. For example, in the retail market, a fully functioning websitehas become essential. Latest retail sales figures show that more than 11% of all retail sales are made online. However, in May 2012, a report by Basekit suggested that three-fifths of UK small businesses were still not online. Specialist hosting companies such as GoDaddy, Fat Cow and 123-reg.com have moved to take advantage of the growing market and have started offering increasing competitive rates. Telecommunications companies, particularly Internet Service Providers (ISPs), have also promoted these services to new and current clients