Is the Cloud Now a Circle?

Sharon Holland

Living In the Clouds

You really can’t talk about IT these days without mentioning cloud or something-as-a-service.  For some it is hard to remember a time when we did not have the cloud, at least in some basic form.  But I do remember the beginnings, and for me the whole cloud journey has come full circle.

Depending on who you read, some say the term ‘the cloud’ was coined as far back as 1996.  I can’t claim to remember exactly when it was, but what I do remember is that back in the 2000s people although liked this new idea of ‘the cloud’, they were so worried about security it took a while to overcome these concerns and get some real momentum in cloud adoption.  Indeed, many industries such as Financial Services felt that this was never going to be something for them.

Back in 2015 author Eugene Danilkis felt that SaaS adoption in Financial Services was ‘at the point where other industries were 10 years ago’.

Fast forward to 2018 and even these industries have overcome their misgivings and store a large amount of data in the cloud, albeit sometimes a hybrid cloud.

But Who Is In The Driving Seat?

My own view is that the main driver increasing this momentum was Shadow IT.  Those naughty marketing departments (and the like) going off and purchasing SaaS applications with a company credit card without any input, or sometimes even any knowledge of it, by the IT department.  This forced IT departments to look at how they could adopt cloud safely – if it is going to happen you might as well be the one managing it.

This also coincided with the influx of Millennials in the workplace – having grown up publishing their personal information all over the Internet they were much less adverse to the risks posed by data in the cloud and fully embraced the benefits that cloud had to offer.

And now we seem to have come full circle with IT regaining control.  I was excited to come across this infographic with concurs with a lot of my thinking.

2017 State of the SaaS-Powered Workplace

But I don’t think this makes enough noise about one of the biggest recent growth areas in Internet services – IT security for personal data.  There seems to be almost weekly press coverage of yet another report on IT security numbers or a security breach affecting millions of customers.  And this is not just about small organizations, it is affecting global corporations as well, in some cases knocking many percentage points off their share price.  This is serious business.

Add in the advent of the new GDPR regulations, which has only increased the need for organizations to demonstrate they are managing customer data effectively and securely, and made breaches more visible by the need to report within a short timeframe.

And once again we see the finance sector being most twitchy about this – a recent survey by, which analysed findings from, found that firms in finance and insurance invested the most money on cyber security (an increase of 85% on FY2017).

Still Hot Stuff

So like it or loathe it, IT security is a hot topic and is going to be for some time to come.  The difference now is that we are talking about a much bigger landscape, according to the 2017 State of the SaaS-Powered Workplace report 73% of organizations say nearly all (80%+) of their apps will be SaaS by 2020.

I think most people agree that there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution, it is finding what works best for your organization (and we can help you discover that if you need our help), but there is no denying the concerns being voiced now are exactly the same as 15 years ago – just with more evidence to back up their fears!

Get in touch with activereach on 0845 625 9025, or see our page on cloud security, to find out how we can make sure you are secure in the cloud.