IT Pros Give Cloud a Resounding Vote of No Confidence

The majority of European IT professionals still believe that doing business in the cloud makes it difficult for them to secure mission-critical apps and impairs their ability to protect sensitive data, according to new research from Netskope.

The cloud security firm interviewed over 1,000 IT pros across the region and found that 64% think that their firm’s use of cloud computing services reduces their ability to protect important information.

A further 59% said they thought doing business in the cloud makes it difficult to secure applications.

More worryingly, a majority appeared to have little faith in their provider’s transparency and adherence to local laws.

Over three-quarters (77%) said they thought their CSP would not alert them immediately after a breach of customer data, while 84% doubted their provider would tell them if sensitive IP was exposed.

What’s more, 72% said they don’t trust their CSP to obey data protection laws and regulations.

“I suspect that the low vote of confidence in cloud vendors we’re seeing is due to this heightened scrutiny and a ‘fear of the unknown.” Overcoming this takes a better understanding of a vendor’s security precautions and how people are using the cloud in the first place,” said Ponemon Institute founder Larry Ponemon.

“Businesses that demand more vendor transparency and seek efficient methods for evaluating apps and directing usage will find it easier to embrace the cloud and move past this period of uncertainty.”

Netskope EMEA vice president, Eduard Meelhuysen, argued that the cloud is not inherently less secure than on-premise set-ups, but that “shadow IT” is undermining firms’ efforts to keep their data safe.

“Most businesses do carry out due diligence on cloud providers as part of a traditional sales cycle, but the rise of shadow IT is totally disrupting this process. Shadow IT now means that companies often don’t even know which cloud apps are being used by their employees,” he told Infosecurity.

“How can you do due diligence into a vendor you don’t even know is in your ecosystem? That’s the reality for businesses these days. One reaction to this is to panic and shut down all cloud apps, but inevitably this harms productivity and annoys employees who want to choose how they do their jobs.”

It must be added that, despite their pessimism over cloud security, European IT professionals are more confident that they’re securing data in the cloud effectively than their US counterparts.

Over half (52%) rated their effectiveness as “high” as opposed to 26% of US respondents in a previous Netskope study.

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