By Jim Kelly, senior systems engineer, Datapac

What are the key considerations for Irish businesses when implementing a hybrid cloud solution?

Cloud computing continues to become increasingly relevant for Irish businesses. Recent research from Datapac highlighted that almost half are storing at least part of their data in the cloud.

Hybrid cloud – what is it?

As the name suggests, hybrid cloud combines elements of both public and private cloud. Public means access is gained using a browser or via a portal and from the user’s perspective, there is no visible difference between using it and a local system. Private means the system is hosted on premise so access is private. Combining both public and private with a hybrid cloud solution has many advantages.

Mission critical data

With a hybrid cloud solution, mission critical data can be kept on premise so that it is secure and readily accessible when needed. While there are secure public cloud options in the Irish market, many organisations are reluctant to store this kind of information in a data centre.

This is justified too – with public cloud options, it is not always clear where exactly information is being stored. If it is in a data centre in the US, for example, many organisations fear their data may be accessible to third party authorities.

Industries that typically carry a lot of sensitive data, such as legal, financial services and pharma, need to be particularly mindful of this.

Less critical data

Now that you’re saving precious on premise storage for mission critical data only, you can move less important data to the public cloud. Email often falls into this category and many outsource it to the public cloud. However, certain organisations should be mindful of sensitive information within emails, particularly in attachments.

Office 365 is the most widely used solution for this in the Irish market, with widely recognised benefits like security, speed, accessibility and value.

Other considerations with hybrid cloud

Ease of access to data is crucial to maintain day to day business operations, no matter what the industry. This needs to be considered when choosing a hybrid cloud option. If there are connections between local servers and data on the public cloud, you may need a fast connection (80 – 100Mb/s) to ensure these are not affected.

For many businesses, this boils down to location. Depending on where you are, you might have access to 100 Mb/s or 2Mb/s. This is a very important consideration and needs to be highlighted when looking at hybrid cloud options.

Here are five simple recommendations to keep in mind when choosing a hybrid cloud option:

1. Identify mission critical data to be kept on premise.

2. If you’re sensitive about data being stored outside of Ireland or the EU, request a letter of assurance from your provider to ensure this won’t happen.

3. Tell your provider what you want to use the cloud for, as this will help them identify the best-fit solution.

4. Make sure your internet speed is sufficient to manage workloads in the cloud.

5. Above all, ensure your solution is secure.

Talk to an expert, like Datapac, which provides bespoke hybrid cloud solutions to businesses all over Ireland. Get in touch with us today and let us find a solution that works for your business.

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