The benefits of utilizing cloud technology for businesses are undeniable. It allows for easy collaboration with team members globally, offers customers updated software and applications, and provides access to an extensive library of media.
However, operating a business on the cloud also entails managing potential risks such as vulnerabilities to hacking and having a plan in place for handling technical issues. This is where the practice of cloud governance comes into play.
What is cloud governance?
Cloud governance is the implementation of a set of guidelines and protocols by businesses that operate in a cloud environment. It aims to improve data security, mitigate risks, and ensure smooth operations.
The ease of access and use of cloud technology is a great advantage for both businesses and consumers, but it also poses the risk of employees creating and deploying their own systems and assets without proper oversight. This can lead to incompatibility issues among different systems within the same organization.
The result? Increased costs and reduced efficiency.
While the cloud offers many benefits, it also brings new security concerns. Even if the cloud service provider’s security measures are robust, assets that are deployed with weak access controls or have high configuration vulnerabilities can make the entire system susceptible to hacking. This is because unlike traditional on-premise IT infrastructures, the cloud does not have firewalls that can protect the system.
Cloud governance is the process of ensuring that all aspects of the cloud environment, including asset deployment, system interactions, and data security, are thoroughly evaluated, managed, and controlled. The transition from on-premise IT infrastructures to the cloud environment adds layers of complexity to the system architecture.
This also means that more people within the organization have the potential to impact the architecture. This highlights the importance of creating and maintaining a detailed cloud governance model to ensure a secure and well-functioning system.
Important Benefits & Importance of a Cloud Governance Framework
Creating and implementing a comprehensive cloud governance framework requires time, resources and effort. It is not something that can be done quickly, and it necessitates collaboration across teams to make sure the final product is comprehensive and actionable.
However, the benefits of having a well-designed cloud governance framework are worth the investment. When executed correctly, it will provide both immediate and long-term benefits to the organization.
Reduced security risks
When an organization decides to move their data to the cloud, it is crucial that they establish security measures to protect that data.
Cloud storage is certainly more convenient than on-premise hosting, but it also increases the risk of data breaches and unauthorized access attempts.
A well-designed cloud governance plan will assist in identifying vulnerabilities within the system, implementing risk mitigation strategies, and measuring the effectiveness of security measures.
Cloud governance streamlines workflows by automating them. Instead of relying on tedious manual processes such as creating complex spreadsheets to monitor different accounts and system activities, cloud governance programs enable the implementation of guardrails that automate management tasks such as budgeting and policy enforcement.
These guardrails can also activate automated responses to cloud activity, reducing the need for manual labor, and in turn lowering costs.
An essential aspect of cloud governance is clearly identifying the ownership and responsibilities of different areas of asset and software management.
This is especially important as it is easy to add new assets to the cloud, and it’s crucial to avoid rogue IT applications and initiatives that can disrupt the sensitive architecture.
By limiting access to critical assets, it ensures the reliability and security of your cloud processes.
Enhanced compliance readiness
Irrespective of the industry, most organizations are required to pass regular audits and compliance assessments. Be it HIPAA, PCI, or SOC 2 requirements, a cloud governance program simplifies compliance preparation and makes it easier to demonstrate compliance.
The advantages of having a cloud governance program in place are multifaceted. Firstly, by keeping the specific compliance requirements in mind, it enables the integration of compliance review and standards in your processes and architecture.
Secondly, it provides a detailed archive of the system’s history, current status, and plans to strengthen compliance, which is useful during compliance documentation.
Cloud governance is a crucial aspect of success, whether you are just considering moving your business to the cloud or have already made the decision to do so. It cannot be ignored or rushed.
Therefore, it’s important to gather a team of individuals from across your organization, to discuss the key issues and build a plan that suits your business. You can always approach Machines and Cloud for all your cloud computing needs and they will take care of cloud governance effortlessly.
Investing more time in discussing cloud governance will assist your team in creating a customized plan for your organization and generate new ideas for other considerations. Operating on the cloud provides ample opportunities for innovation, optimization, and scalability. Cloud governance is the key to unlocking this potential.