Cloud vs. Data Center Security: What’s the Difference?

When managing your organization’s data, you need to decide how and where to store your information for accessibility, disaster recovery, and security.

There are two options: using an on-site data center or an off-site, internet-based cloud solution. The cloud is a cost-effective option for businesses and provides a highly scalable infrastructure, whereas a data center will require more of an initial investment and ongoing costs.

You may also have the option of doing a hybrid structure, where you use the cloud for more generalized data and on-site hardware for sensitive information. Both certainly have their pros and cons, but when it comes to security, what’s the difference between these two options?

Cloud: Security Is Handled By a Third Party

When your data is stored in the cloud, your company does not handle its security. Instead, a third party will be responsible for cloud security.

Since the cloud is web-based, security is crucial. Cloud providers understand this and work to properly configure and maintain their security measures for maximum benefits. Therefore, your information may be more secure in the cloud than an on-site data center.

The cloud also offers another security layer to your data—the cloud typically stores your information in a different geographical location (or several locations) than your physical business. This type of geographical diversity minimizes the chances that a natural disaster or another event would impact both your on-site data and data stored in the cloud.

However, while your company doesn’t control cloud security, you are responsible for choosing a reputable provider because should your data be compromised, your company will be directly impacted. Customers won’t blame your cloud provider—they will blame you.

It’s also your company’s responsibility to ensure your team uses best security practices when cloud computing with BYOD or using mobile devices off-site.

While there are many security benefits to the cloud, it may not be the right choice if you need to meet strict requirements for compliance and security, or you may be able to consider a hybrid cloud solution for your data if this is the case.

Data Center: You Control Security

A data center allows you to have a dedicated site, typically on-premises, where you own and maintain hardware to store data. A data center gives you more control over your information, but the downside is that your company is solely responsible for the security of that information.

Unless your company has a dedicated IT department or in-house professionals that can handle data security, a data center may not be the right choice for you. It may also be an option to outsource your security needs to a third-party provider, but either way, you are ultimately responsible for your data center’s security.

Compared to the cloud, a data center has limited access points, meaning there is less risk for unauthorized parties to access information. However, a data center doesn’t provide the scalability or cost-effectiveness that the cloud does, making this option impractical for many businesses.

If you are a large company that can afford to host its own data center or needs to maintain more control over its information, a dedicated data center may be the right choice.

Which One Is Right for You?

Whether you choose a cloud solution or a data center depends on your security needs, budget, and business size. Cloud offers businesses the flexibility, affordability, and accessibility they need in our digital world. Contact neteffect technologies today to discover if the cloud could be the right choice for your data management needs.