5 Common misconceptions about the cloud

The cloud's ability to deliver on-demand processing power and applications via the internet is one of the most important technologies in the 21st century. Leading cloud platforms like Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, and AWS have helped many companies optimize their IT operations and grow their businesses.

Despite its widespread popularity, some small-business owners are still unsure about the cloud. The cloud is only a fad, right? Not even close. Cloud services are here to stay and are constantly evolving. Cloud computing - in the 10 short years since its inception - has gone from a clever idea and morphed into a business-critical core technology.

So what is the cloud exactly?

At its intrinsic level, the cloud is a collection of computers, servers, and databases that are connected together in a way that users can lease access to share their combined power. Cloud computing is scalable so that buyers can choose to increase or decrease the amount of computing power they need. It's a set of very complex infrastructure technologies that keeps your data safe and secure.

Of course, not everyone buys into something just because the rest of the crowd has. The cloud and its services still has some mystery surrounding it. We're going to put to bed some of those myths and show you how to get the most out of moving to the cloud, angst-free.

The cloud isn't secure

The first misconception that cloud skeptics have is that it is more susceptible to cyberthreats because their apps and data are maintained by third-party service providers. But in reality, the cloud is probably one of the safest places to store your assets.

Cloud services providers store your apps and data in their own data centers equipped with advanced firewalls, intrusion detection tools, antivirus software, encryption programs, and backup systems. What's more, they have a full roster of certified cybersecurity engineers making sure your apps are patched and only your staff has access to your files.

There's nothing wrong with storing data on in-house servers, but if you don't have the robust network infrastructure, multi-layered security, and a team of professionals on staff to keep your IT safe, defending against the wide array of online threats is impossible.

The cloud is expensive

Migrating to the cloud saves lots of money over setting up and maintaining in-house servers. That's because you only have to pay for the computing resources, storage space, and apps you need, with none of upfront hardware and ongoing utility costs - the provider takes care of these. Technical support is also handled by the provider, so you don't have to keep a full-time technician on your payroll.

Unlike other types of malware, spyware is subtle and doesn't attempt to harm your computer in any obvious way. In other words, you may not notice any obvious symptoms, so regular system scans with anti-malware software is a good way to make sure your data can't be stolen and sold on the Dark Web.

The cloud can't be customised

Not everyone needs the same services in the cloud. Some companies who need unlimited computing resources may benefit from public clouds like Microsoft Azure and AWS, while those who require tighter data security and more control should consider private clouds. And when businesses need both, hybrid clouds give them the best of both worlds.

There are also different service models to choose from, including Software-as-a-Service, Platform-as-a-Service, and Infrastructure-as-a-Service. To make the right investment, it's important to discuss your needs with your cloud provider so they can develop a solution that works for your company and your budget.

Trojan horses are only able to enter through back doors if your PC is connected to the internet, so if you think you've been attacked by one, all you need to do is disconnect from the internet and find and remove the malware by running a full scan with your anti-malware software.

The cloud is complicated

The productivity benefits of the cloud don't happen overnight. Just like with any new technology, you must teach employees about the wide array of collaboration tools they can use, and how to use them well. But if you pick a cloud service with intuitive features, training times should be relatively short. In fact, there are services like Office 365 that feature Microsoft Office apps you and your employees apps may already be familiar with.

Hackers will threaten to either go public with your data or delete it. No matter what they say, it's not smart to give in to their demands because there are no guarantees that they'll release your data.

The cloud migration process takes months - we cannot afford the downtime

There is a lot of planning involved in a cloud migration process. For example, you need to consider which files must be uploaded to the cloud and which ones are better stored on premises. You also have to think about how much bandwidth is required to run cloud services. A good cloud provider will have the right expertise and tools to make your migration process quick, painless, and stress-free.

To get the most out of your cloud services, you need to partner up with a managed IT services provider (MSP). With an MSP there is very little to no downtime for data migration. Not sure which cloud computing services are right for your company's needs? An MSP team of experts will evaluate your servers and network and consult with you to come up with the perfect plan for cloud migration minus the worry. Seamless implementation without the hassle.

What next?

BlackStone Associates can help you migrate to the cloud and make sure you get the most out of the technology. If you would like to find out more about how our IT services can protect and grow your business, click here to book your free consultation call.

About BlackStone Associates

Established in 2014, BlackStone Associates is a leading provider of IT solutions and critical IT Support in Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Middlesex, Surrey & London. Offering a complete portfolio of innovative and robust IT services that enable businesses, of all sizes and sectors, to create modern-age, digital workspaces, that are designed to scale and support the current and future demands of its workforce.

As a vendor independent company, our loyalty is soley to you, our customer. Consequently, customer satisfaction is at the heart of BlackStone Associates' success, with its ability to deliver tailored IT and network solutions at an affordable price.

With an expert team of engineers and support staff with 20 years of experience, it's no wonder why many businesses & organisations trust BlackStone Associates to design, implement, manage and support their IT operations.

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