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Above the Clouds: Managing Risk in the World of Cloud Computing (ePub)

Above the Clouds - Managing Risk in the World of Cloud Computing

SKU: 2826
Authors: Kevin T. McDonald
Publishers: IT Governance Publishing
Format: Adobe eBook
ISBN13: 9781849280327
Pages: 166
Published: 23 Feb 2010
Availability: Always Available
Format: Softcover
ISBN13: 9781849280310
Pages: 170
Published: 23 Feb 2010
Availability: In Stock
Format: Adobe ePub
ISBN13: 9781849280990
Pages: 166
Published: 23 Feb 2010
Availability: In Stock

A comprehensive introduction to the benefits and risks associated with transitioning to cloud computing.

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Price: $31.99


If you are interested in ways to make your business more efficient, then cloud computing may be just what you have been looking for. Cloud computing can enable you to drive down the costs of your IT function. In cloud computing, data is no longer stored in-house and software applications will no longer be owned by your company.

Instead, computing is shifted to a shared service provider. Once you adopt cloud computing, you will then be charged for use of software applications and data storage in the same way you are currently charged for electricity. In an era of tight budgets, the opportunity to make financial savings means that cloud computing looks especially attractive.

If you have a Gmail account, you will already be using a form of cloud computing. Your emails are stored externally, and you can read them anywhere on your laptop or on your Blackberry. NetBooks are another instance of cloud computing. These devices are simple, with limited functionality, and the only apps are in the cloud.

Learn how to manage risk in the cloud

For cloud computing to be a viable option, you need to be confident that your business information will be secure and that the service you offer to your customers will still be reliable. So if you want to adopt a cloud computing strategy, you need to make sure you carry out due diligence on the service provider before you entrust this firm with your vital data.

However, the author challenges the assumption that cloud computing will offer less protection to your data than relying on an in-house server. Cloud computing not only allows you to make economies of scale, it can also offer you the increased security that comes from sharing the resource. The author argues that moving over to cloud computing can actually help to defend your organization from threats such as denial of service attacks, viruses, and worms.

Making the right decision

Cloud service providers will tell you that cloud computing is bound to be better, faster, and cheaper. The reality is that before switching over to cloud computing, you need to think carefully about whether it will really work for your business. This book shows you what you need to do to ensure that with cloud computing you will continue to give the standard of service your customers require. It also offers you some valuable tips on how to choose your provider of cloud services.

Benefits to business

  • Reduce operating costs. On average, in-house data centers use only around 10 to 15 per cent of available capacity. Because cloud computing allows users to share resources, the idle capacity is regained. As a result, you could succeed in cutting your operating costs by as much as 80 per cent.

  • Focus on your core business. There are some tasks that your IT people will only have to perform occasionally. These jobs will be unfamiliar and therefore take more time to get done. When you move these extraneous operations over to the cloud, your IT team can concentrate on the jobs that they do best and thus operate more efficiently.

  • Save energy. Running a data center normally requires heavy investment in power supply, generators, and uninterruptible power supplies. By consolidating workloads on high-performance processors, cloud computing reduces power consumption and can therefore help you to cut your energy bills.

  • Use software that is up to date. With cloud computing, software is rented in a package for all users of the service. This means that when new software suites are released, such as new versions of Microsoft Office, everyone in the cloud will be able to use them from the word go.

  • As the author comments, “The concept of shifting computing to a shared service provider is not new. What may be new is that the cost of cloud computing is falling so dramatically that considering outsourcing to the cloud is no longer rare, and it is now accessible enough that any individual or organisation can use it to their advantage."


"A Solid primer on the cloud computing issues of today. Provides a good starting point for considering the issues of risk, security, governance, and how organizations can begin to think about moving appropriate workloads to the cloud."
Ray DePena
Competitive Innovation Industry Consultant.

"… This book is well organized and offers a quick way to get up to speed on a very expansive topic. I found this book very helpful in dispelling a few misconceptions I had about cloud computing. My organization is moving toward a Cloud environment and I have recommended this book to work [colleagues] who would like to learn more about it."
( review)

"Above the Clouds provides a comprehensive introduction to the benefits and risks associated with transitioning to cloud computing…"
Ruth Fisher ( review)

"… Above the Clouds provides an excellent survey of the risks and rewards inherent to any cloud computing transition'.
Kevin L Jackson
IT Strategist and Writer

"I will be giving copies of Above the Clouds to my clients that need a baseline understanding of all-things-cloud…"
( review)

"Kevin McDonald's discussion of the benefits of cloud computing is lively and comprehensive… Very useful book for evaluating this type of data management."

About the author

Kevin T. McDonald is a Senior Information Technology Analyst and Cloud Strategist for ICF International Inc., a consulting firm in Washington, DC. A member of the Tech America Cloud Computing Committee, the Cloud Computing Group for the Industry Advisory Council, and the Cloud Security Alliance, Kevin has over 25 years’ experience in IT, choosing to specialize in cybersecurity, infrastructure protection, and business continuity.



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