Six principles for effective cloud computing

The growing shift to cloud computing can deliver significant value—but most enterprises have little knowledge of the perils of transferring IT decision making away from technology specialists to business unit leaders.

Eliminating oversight and governance from cloud computing decisions can create significant risk to organizations, effectively undermining any benefits of moving to the cloud and, at the same time, potentially creating serious issues for organizations.

Only through proper governance and management can cloud computing achieve its potential for organizations. To help enterprises manage the potential pressure points that begin to surface when cloud computing strategies diverge from internally provided IT services or traditional outsourced arrangements, ISACA outlined six key cloud computing principles:

The enablement principle: Plan for cloud computing as a strategic enabler, rather than as an outsourcing arrangement or technical platform.

The cost/benefit principle: Evaluate the benefits of cloud acquisition based on a full understanding of the costs of cloud compared with the costs of other technology platform business solutions.

The enterprise risk principle: Take an enterprise risk management (ERM) perspective to manage the adoption and use of cloud.

The capability principle: Integrate the full extent of capabilities that cloud providers offer with internal resources to provide a comprehensive technical support and delivery solution.

The accountability principle: Manage accountabilities by clearly defining internal and provider responsibilities.

The trust principle: Make trust an essential part of cloud solutions, building trust into all business processes that depend on cloud computing.

“Cloud computing presents a unique opportunity for enterprises—and is particularly a game-changer for small and medium enterprises because its availability means that technology infrastructure is not the market differentiator it has been in the past,” said Ramsés Gallego, CISM, CGEIT, member of ISACA’s Guidance and Practices Committee and security strategist and evangelist for Quest Software. “These principles will enable enterprises to experience the value that cloud can provide and help ensure that internal and external users can trust cloud solutions.”

The complete “Guiding Principles for Cloud Computing Adoption and Use” guide is available here (registration required).

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