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July 6, 2023
Enterprises are implementing a multi-cloud strategy to tap the capabilities of different providers that suit them best, minimizing vendor lock-in and saving them money in the long run. However, companies and sectors are adopting this strategy at various speeds — some have barely initiated their migration to the cloud while others have failed to optimize a sprawling infrastructure to drive true cost savings and business agility.
For those who are struggling to adopt, the lack of a multi-cloud architecture and other solutions that ensure seamless interoperability between different clouds and the security of their data complicate matters further. This is where cloud-agnostic architecture and AI come in.
When adopting a multi-cloud strategy, cloud-agnostic architecture is essential in promoting frictionless connectivity among different providers and services. To implement this type of architecture, businesses must do the following:
Carry out a single approach across various cloud environments.
Execute the best security strategy according to the requirements of each application.
Consider optimal integration, which enables the exchange of information among different solutions.
Choose SaaS-type models or cloud-native tools, which reduce costs.
AI also plays a major role in successful multi-cloud adoption. When implemented into cloud computing, it can do the following:
Allows enterprises to be more agile, providing cost benefits through data insights, as well as workflow and task automation.
Enables automated cloud migration.
Offers insights and flexibility by ingesting and analyzing large quantities of data through algorithms to create actionable insights for optimization in a fraction of the time required by humans. This in turn streamlines workflows, provides real-time analytics and reduces errors.
Businesses globally are adopting this cloud strategy to take advantage of its benefits, such as increased flexibility and scalability, as well as a reduction in dependence on a single supplier. But some companies still face multiple challenges in their multi-cloud journey, such as managing complex environments, and ensuring data security and regulatory compliance, so further steps need to be taken to overcome them.
To ensure data protection in a multi-cloud environment, it is necessary to carefully plan and implement security measures to protect data when it is moved from one environment to another. This means adopting the following measures, which can be assisted by AI:
Encrypting data both in transit and at ‘rest’ to protect it from unauthorized access. This includes encrypting data when it circulates between different service providers and within each cloud environment.
Implementing strong identity and access management policies, such as multi-factor authentication and role-based access control, to ensure that only authorized users have access to the data.
Classifying data according to its sensitivity and regulatory requirements is a key element in determining the appropriate security measures to be applied to each data set.
Backing up data regularly and storing it in a secure environment — often ‘air-gapped.’ In the event of a security breach or data loss, the implementation of a backup and recovery plan ensures that the data is not permanently lost.
Adopting security event monitoring and analysis tools to detect security threats and counter them in real time.
In addition, compliance with regulatory requirements, such as the European Digital Operational Resilience Act (which may apply to certain organizations in the U.K.), GDPR, or other regulations is required. Cloud providers must also work with an effective data protection service that guarantees the confidentiality of the data, its ownership and its recovery.
In summary, companies must implement a combination of technical measures, policies, and procedures to ensure both the backup and protection of their data in a multi-cloud environment and their adherence to regional regulation.
Multi-cloud is rising in popularity among businesses, and while some have taken the correct steps to ensure their success with the strategy, others have yet to master it.
The good news is by adopting a cloud-agnostic architecture, coupled with AI, companies can navigate a multi-cloud approach, which results in increased flexibility, better service delivery, profitability, reduced costs and avoiding vendor lock-in.
A well-designed multi-cloud strategy also ensures data security, but it is important to work with suppliers and cloud experts to design and deploy a comprehensive data protection strategy that meets the specific needs of each organization and local laws.
Managing multi-cloud infrastructure can be daunting at first, but when done right, and with the right IT experts and providers at your side, it can be a smart investment strategy and one of the best decisions your business can make this year — and beyond.
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