Globe and Mail: Beware cloud computing's trapdoors


(1-Feb-2012) The toll of cyber crime appears to be rising as criminals become more sophisticated and more focused on financial gain. And while businesses are doing a bit better at protecting themselves, criminals have become better at bypassing the standard security measures, experts say.

To complicate matters, more businesses are adopting cloud computing, in which they run software and store data on computers outside their own premises and their own direct control. (The term can also refer to internal or private clouds, which distribute work over multiple servers but only within an organization.)

Worries about data hold some businesses back from cloud computing. When Toronto-based technology news site ITBusiness.ca surveyed about 300 small and medium businesses last September, about 35 per cent named security as their biggest concern about cloud computing.

But cloud computing isn’t necessarily less secure, says Brian Baird, chair of the Canadian chapter of the non-profit Cloud Security Alliance and chief technology officer of the Identity Management Centre of Excellence at SaskTel in Regina.

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