You may have heard about companies experiencing cloud outages, but you may not know how serious that is, or how it might affect you. Defining the Cloud is actually harder than you’d think… keep reading and all will be revealed.
Cloud services refer to online data storage and allow users to access a shared pool of resources from somewhere on the web. Most email services like Gmail or Hotmail are cloud-based. By using the cloud, you can enjoy cost efficiencies (i.e. you don’t need to keep buying bigger hard drives), and improved safety for your data.
Cloud outages are not uncommon, they appear without warning and often there are no indications as to how long the repairs will take to get things up and running again. Take Dropbox for example – the first cloud outage of 2013. The entire service was down for 15 hours, and made many users question whether online backup systems like cloud services were stable enough for companies to run 100% in the cloud. Take Amazon’s outage in July of 2012 – Netflix, Pinterest and Instagram were all down as a result. The cost per date of all cloud outages is estimated at $71.7 million.
Reducing the Risk
Unfortunately, no cloud services companies can offer a 100% uptime guarantee, but there are ways companies and individuals can reduce their risk.
- Don’t just commit to one cloud data center, but spreading your data over several different servers, you won’t be left twiddling your thumbs if there’s a cloud outage.
- Security is a strong point for most cloud services, but BullGuard recommends taking extra steps to ensure data privacy.
- [Regular users:] Consider using a comprehensive security suite that comes with both security tools, like antivirus, firewall and more, and online backup services. BullGuard Internet Security comes with award-winning antivirus protection and 5 GB of online backup, to keep all your important files safe. Extra caution never hurts!
Companies that don’t use the cloud run risks of losing their data as well. Floods or storms can wreak their physical servers; they can be infected with viruses and malware, or even hacked in to. These days, no solution comes without a risk. It’s just a case of doing your research, being aware of the risks and picking one!
Do you use the cloud, and do you love it?
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