According to experts in the technology sector, the trend toward cloud computing is accelerating, which creates a heightened need for companies to make sure that adequate security measures are in place. In fact, Jerry Archer, who serves as the senior vice president and chief security officer for Sallie Mae commented at the recent RSA Conference 2012 that "Most people in this room underestimate how fast we’ll move to cloud . . .security is not likely going to stand in the way . . . It’s a tidal wave. … .It will be irresistible and we have to make sure it’s secure."
Archer's point is well-taken. Cloud technologies are significantly more efficient than traditional models of computing; by some estimates they can cut IT expenses by more than 80%. At the same time, businesses and other organizations considering a cloud computing option do need to make sure that they are not sacrificing data security in any way as the reap the benefit of those cost savings.
One way to integrate security into cloud computing IT solutions is to have both functions administered by a managed services provider. MSPs specialize in providing remotely based IT services to small and mid-sized businesses who are trying to wean themselves away from the costly traditional model of maintaining their own IT department. A managed services provider can set up cloud computing in a number of ways including establishing secure private clouds used only by the business in question. They can also make sure that strong additional security measures such as a firewall are in place.