Security of data in the cloud now an executive-level concern

The Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) surveyed more than 200 IT and security professionals, and nearly 72 percent admitted that they did not know the number of shadow IT apps within their organization, but certainly want to. Decisions concerning the security of data in the cloud has shifted from the IT room to the boardroom, with 61 percent of companies indicating that executives are now involved in such decisions.

“As companies move data to the cloud, they are looking to put in place policies and processes so that employees can take advantage of cloud services that drive business growth without compromising the security, compliance, and governance of corporate data,” said Jim Reavis, CEO of the CSA.

While security of data remains a top barrier to cloud adoption, organizations are still moving forward in adopting cloud services, with 74 percent of respondents indicating they are either moving full steam ahead, or with caution, in the adoption of cloud services.

Respondents from APAC indicated the highest level of adoption plans. However, 34 percent of respondents indicated that a lack of knowledge and experience on the part of IT and business managers pointed was a main reason for slow or lack of adoption.

When it comes to policies and procedures for managing cloud adoption, large enterprises have the most in place. Companies with more than 5,000 employees are more likely to have a cloud governance committee (35 percent versus 12 percent), have a policy on acceptable cloud usage (61 percent versus 45 percent), and have a security awareness training program (26 percent versus 20 percent) compared to companies with fewer than 5,000 employees.

However, large enterprise, are more hesitant when it comes investing heavily in cloud services, with only 36 percent of them spending more than 20 percent of the IT budget on cloud services, compared with 49 percent of companies with fewer than 5,000 employees.

In general, business users regularly demand cloud services, with 57 percent of respondents indicating they receive between one and 10 new cloud service requests each month. While 62 percent of respondents indicated that they do not block cloud services, the top services block by regions include cloud storage providers and social networking sites.

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