How Are You Defining Cloud if You’re Still “Thinking about the Cloud?” (RSA 2016)

Guest blog by David Spark, Spark Media Solutions

“Everything needs to be interconnected, and to get the kind of availability that you’re going to want to have in a hyper-connected world, then you need to rely on cloud assets,” said Andy Ellis (@csoandy), CSO, Akamai. “There are capabilities that the cloud provides that you really can’t get at scale within your own environment.”

In our conversation at the 2016 RSA Conference in San Francisco, I mentioned to Andy that I was surprised how many people still were “thinking about the cloud.”

Ellis believes people who are still ‘thinking about the cloud’ have just really narrowed their definition to just be Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). For those people, ‘moving to the cloud’ usually means moving data to an Amazon facility. But the cloud means so many other things to so many people. Cloud can be about as SaaS, PaaS, and capabilities as a service.

For those customers who are still on the fence about cloud, I asked Ellis to give me an example of one of his customers who was traditionally not cloud enabled, but transformed significantly as a result of moving to the cloud. He gave an example of a financial services company that shared educational information from a number of disparate systems.

“The cloud is critically important, and any CISO who doesn’t recognize that might be a little behind the times or is in a very unique business location,” said Ellis.

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