As with any relatively new system, there are some concerns about cloud computing. Everything ranging from security and privacy to rights of ownership of the data involved. These are issues that will have to be addressed soon as use of cloud computing services increases.
Security and Privacy
Almost certainly the most worries about cloud computing concern security and privacy. Not unnaturally, the idea of handing over important data to another company makes some people extremely anxious. Corporate executives might be reluctant to take advantage of a cloud computing system because it will render them unable to keep their company’s information under their own roof.
In response, companies offering cloud computing services state that their livelihood depends upon having an excellent reputation. It is to their advantage to have reliable security measures in place. If breaches of security were to begin occurring on a regular basis, the company would lose all of its clients and be driven out of business. That’s why they realize that it’s in their best interest to use the most advanced techniques to protect their clients’ data.
Unfortunately, privacy is not as easily guaranteed. Think about it. If a client can log in from any location to gain access to data and applications, it’s possible the client’s privacy could be compromised. Cloud computing companies simply must develop new ways to protect client privacy.
One way companies use is authentication techniques such as user names and passwords. Another way is to use an authorization format — meaning that each user can access only the data and applications relevant to their job.
That covers the issues of security and privacy. Other questions regarding cloud computing are more personal rather than technical. Does the user or company subscribing to the cloud computing service own the data? Does the cloud computing system, which provides the actual storage space, own it? Can a cloud computing company legally deny a client access to that client’s data? These questions are being hotly debated right now.
Effects on Other Industries
There’s also another pressing question that is alarming some people. How will cloud computing affect other industries? There’s growing concern in the IT industry about exactly how cloud computing could impact the business of computer maintenance and repair. If companies switch to using streamlined computer systems, they’ll have fewer IT needs. This could force IT jobs to migrate to the back end of the cloud computing system.
Less demand means less work. IT companies could find themselves having to compete even more with rival companies offering the same services. Plus, those smaller companies that can’t effectively compete with the large ones may find they are slowly being squeezed out of the equation.
There’s is yet one more concern about another area of research in the computer science community. This is autonomic computing. Basically, an autonomic computing system is self-managing, which means that the system monitors itself and takes measures to prevent or repair problems.
Presently, autonomic computing is still theoretical. But, if autonomic computing does become a reality, it could also cause the elimination of the need for many IT maintenance jobs. That could be a very serious blow to the economy in the not too distant future.
All of this must be taken into consideration in due course, however, there’s no stopping progress, and while all companies will not turn to cloud computing services, many, if not most, will and the results will be interesting to watch. Is cloud computing really the utopia some proclaim it to be, only time will tell.