Most European CIOs make cloud a priority but security concerns remain

17 Feb 2012

More than two-thirds of European IT decision makers rate cloud computing as a priority today, but the same old challenges remain: 45pc say security is a barrier to adoption and 40pc are wary of being locked into a single provider.

The findings are from research by the data centre operator Interxion, which polled responses from IT decision makers and influencers at 292 companies in 11 European countries, including Ireland.

The figures relating to cloud’s importance are broadly similar across large, medium and small enterprises, the survey found. Three-quarters of respondents said they either currently use or plan to use cloud computing in the next two years.

The most important factors in driving cloud computing investment are: to reduce cost of infrastructure, the ability to grow while reducing resources, greater scalability and the ability to perform better backup and disaster recovery, the survey found.

Close to half of respondents expect more than 50pc of their IT will be delivered from the cloud within a similar timeframe. In 23pc of cases, IT leaders expect more than 75pc of their IT to be housed in the cloud.

The same number of IT chiefs who rated security as a concern also said service level agreements were another sticking point in moving to the cloud. Preventing data loss is the primary concern, cited by 71pc of respondents. Preventing outages was next at 64pc, while 58pc rated keeping security up to date as an issue.

The types of application usage in the cloud threw back some varied responses. The most popular were hosting websites, backup and recovery, email and calendaring, software test and development, and CRM.

“What’s clear from our survey is that there’s not yet any single ‘killer app’ that’s driving cloud deployment,” the report said. “This bears out the finding that companies’ intentions around cloud adoption are driven by a combination of other factors, such as increased flexibility and reducing the cost of infrastructure.”

Interxion concluded perceived barriers to the cloud can be partly alleviated by allowing organisations to test the technology prior to making the move fully.

Gordon Smith was a contributor to Silicon Republic