Involve CIOs when procuring cloud computing

Thursday 6 December 2012

IT security

New research has found that over 50 per cent of chief information officers (CIOs) fail to test cloud vendors' security systems and procedures, when migrating their software to the cloud.

A report from the Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) found that the rate of adoption by UK organisations is accelerating, with 61 per cent of companies using a cloud-based computing service, compared with just 48 per cent in 2011.

Just 11 per cent of CIOs said that they not taking any proactive action to address cybersecurity, while 12 per cent said that they were 'not concerned' about cybersecurity. A further 30 per cent of CIOs stated that they were very concerned about the security risks that going into the cloud could potentially present to their organisation.

However, despite the security risks taken by some CIOs, many businesses were taking steps to combat IT security flaws, by improving physical security (44 per cent), while 39 per cent of firms are developing business continuity processes.

Other measures being taken include identifying management systems (34 per cent) and relying on an external audit provider (13 per cent).

Ryan Rubin, UK Director of risk consultancy Protiviti, said that there is an inherent trust that many companies have in the cloud, although he urged firms to be cautious when it comes to IT security.

He said: "Since an increasingly higher percentage of IT security breaches involve third parties, gaining assurance from cloud providers is critical to managing information security risk.

"Whilst companies may migrate IT towards cloud providers in an attempt to reduce costs, they cannot outsource their information security risks. Unless adequately managed, the cost of security breaches - either regulatory or legal - may outweigh the perceived benefits of moving into the cloud."

He added that CIOs should be more involved in the decision to procure cloud services in order to reduce security risks when using cloud computing.

Posted by Alex Boardman